Newcastle United urges fans not to wear Arab ‘head coverings, robes’ costumes

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Newcastle United Football Club issued a statement urging fans to not wear Arab head coverings or robes following the club’s Saudi-backed PIF takeover.

While the gesture was widely acknowledged as positive, the club stated that it may be viewed as “culturally inappropriate” and offensive to some.

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“A number of supporters have recently attended St. James’ Park wearing associated head coverings and robes,” the statement read.

“No one among the new ownership group was in any way offended by the attire of the fans who chose to celebrate in this way. It was a gesture that was acknowledged as positive and welcoming in its intent. However, there remains the possibility that dressing this way is culturally inappropriate and risks causing offense to others,” the club stated.

“All visitors to the club are, as always, encouraged to wear whatever is the norm for their own culture or religion, continuing to reflect the broad and rich multicultural communities and groups from which the club proudly draws its support,” the statement added.

The three-party Saudi-led consortium that purchased Newcastle United on October 7 includes: Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), venture capital and private equity firm PCO Partners and RB Sports and Media.

“Following the completion of the Premier League’s Owners’ and Directors’ Test, the club has been sold to the consortium with immediate effect,” a statement from the Premier League read.

“All parties have agreed the settlement is necessary to end the long uncertainty for fans over the club’s ownership. The Premier League has now received legally binding assurances that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia will not control Newcastle United Football Club.”

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