Newcastle United manager Eddie Howe said his side does not hold an advantage over other teams after a vote by English Premier League clubs on a temporary ban on related-party loans did not receive enough support.
Thirteen Premier League clubs voted in favour of the temporary ban on loan moves between teams under the same ownership at a shareholders’ meeting on Tuesday, British media reported, falling one vote short of the number needed for it to be introduced.
The vote meant that Newcastle, who in October 2021 was acquired by a group led by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), will be permitted to loan players from other clubs also owned by the fund.
PIF owns majority stakes in the Saudi Pro League’s “big four” clubs — Al-Ittihad, Al-Ahli, Al-Nassr and Al-Hilal — who signed players like Karim Benzema, Riyad Mahrez, Sadio Mane, Ruben Neves and Neymar in the last transfer window.
Other Premier League teams also have ownership ties to other clubs. Manchester City is owned by Abu Dhabi company City Football Group which has stakes in many clubs around the world, while the consortium BlueCo, which purchased Chelsea last year, reached an agreement to become shareholders of French club Racing Strasbourg in June.
“It was a Premier League vote, we’re not the only club involved,” Howe said ahead of Saturday’s game against Chelsea. “I think the majority of clubs own other clubs around the world. It’s not solely on us.
“Newcastle had a view; we voted our way, as we’re allowed to, and the vote came out on the side it did. We’re very relaxed on it.
“We have a squad we really like, if we can get players fit before January, then the need to recruit will become much less intense for us. That will be a decision made towards the window opening rather than now.
“No advantage in my eyes. We’re the same as every other Premier League club.”
Seventh-placed Newcastle, who lost its last two games in all competitions, will look to get back on track and break Chelsea’s momentum when it hosts at St James’ Park.
Chelsea beat London rivals Tottenham Hotspur and drew with leaders City before the international break.
Newcastle, however, has suffered several injuries. Callum Wilson, its leading scorer for the past three seasons, joined a long list of injuries at the club.
Harvey Barnes, Sven Botman, Jacob Murphy, Dan Burn, Elliot Anderson and Matt Targett were already on the sidelines.
“It’s going to be a demanding month for us, especially with the Champions League and League Cup involvement,” Howe said.
“We have given ourselves a real intense period. An even bigger challenge with the absentees we have but we roll with it, we go with it. The players we have fit and available are very strong.”
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