TalkSport pundit and former football club owner Simon Jordan has given his thoughts on Mike Ashley amid reports he is set to make a bid for Derby County.
Recent reports have suggested that Ashley is putting himself in a position to buy the club for £50m.
Any deal would see him make a return to English football following his sale of Newcastle United back in October.
But whilst he can easily afford Derby’s apparent valuation after the windfall he received from the new Newcastle owners alone, there’s still a lot of work to be done at Pride Park as they look set to recover from the Mel Morris era, with the club in serious danger of slipping down to League One.
Speaking about the proposed bid on TalkSport, Jordan cast doubt over whether or not Ashley would succeed in his attempt to buy the Rams, hinting that if he did, he didn’t see him doing it necessarily for the club’s benefit, suggesting it would only be a way for himself to continue what he started at Newcastle by using the club as a means to promote his own brands.
Jordan said: “Now, you put Mike Ashley, if it is to be the case – and I’m not sure that it is – but if it is to be the case, then you know that Ashley is going to run the club in a certain way. And he’s going to give it certain parameters that will give it the stability that perhaps they haven’t had previously.
“If he were to buy Derby, he’s not going to buy Derby with any benefit of them being in League One, is he? He’s not going to buy Derby with any benefit of them really being in the Championship. He’s going to buy them to find an economic way to continue his involvement with football if that’s what he really wants.”
TIF Thoughts on Simon Jordan’s comments about Derby County and Mike Ashley…
Would you like to see Mike Ashley at Derby County?
Jordan is right that Ashley would bring some stability to the club compared to the previous owner. In fact, one of the few plusses to come from his time at Newcastle was the fact he was able to keep the club in a decent position financially, best demonstrated by how much flexibility he has given the new owners with regards to Financial Fair Play – something Derby County could do with themselves.
And whilst that might not sound the most exciting prospect for Derby fans, it will at least stop them from continuing to plummet and becoming the next Portsmouth by dropping further down the leagues as a result of financial issues.
Plus, when it comes to getting back up at the first time of asking, Ashley has shown his willingness to spend, so whilst there might be some benefits for him, it would be unfair to say that Derby wouldn’t receive some of the benefits as well.