Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

United with the City Once Again

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

United with the City Once Again

Article excerpt

Byline: Will Metcalfe Reporter

TOON bosses are back in talks with council chiefs after a silence of almost three years.

Lee Charnley, managing director at Newcastle United, has been in talks behind closed doors with council leader Nick Forbes over how the club can work with Newcastle City Council to help promote the city.

It is believed Mr Charnley requested the meeting and the two organisations are hoping to build on the success of events such as the Magic Weekend which saw top sides take part in a Rugby League weekend extravaganza at St James' Park.

The parties had not been in close contact following the attempt to change the name of St James' Park to the Sports Direct Arena which saw Coun Forbes call on media to ignore the attempted rebrand as well as refusing to change street signage towards the ground.

The council leader was also an outspoken critic of the club over the Wonga sponsorship deal and it is understood neither club, nor council leader, remained in close contact following the rift. But now talks are back on after Mr Charnley organised a meeting with the council leader, and the Magpies are now looking to work with the city council to help promote the city around the world.

Coun Forbes said: "I am very happy that Newcastle United is helping Newcastle Council achieve its ambitions in promoting the city nationally and internationally as a great place to invest. "I met recently with the club's managing director Lee Charnley and we discussed how the council and the club can work together in future.

"Newcastle United is one of our most recognisable international brands and it will be great to have them on the team as one of the city's star players when it comes to promoting Newcastle."

Both club and council could be set to play on the strength of the team's European stars to market the city to potential investors and with players from the Netherlands, France, Slovakia, Ireland and Spain as well as stars from Africa.

And it is believed potential deals could even see Toon stars acting as ambassadors for the city in when the council pitch investment opportunities. …

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