Newcastle LGBT+ fan group quits Pride in Football network after takeover fallout

Newcastle United's LGBT fan group, United with Pride, has quit the Pride in Football network following the Saudi Arabian Public Investment Fund's £300m takeover of the Magpies.

Despite passing the Premier League's club ownership test, the Tyneside club has faced mass criticism for the Saudi-backed takeover due to the nation's current stance on LGBT+ rights.

Same-sex relationships is illegal in the Saudi Arabia with punishments for those found committing such acts.

Now, in a statement via The Athletic, Pride in Football confirmed United with Pride has decided to leave the network.

It reads: "LGBT+ fans groups have faced increasing media attention since the takeover of Newcastle United given the questions raised around human rights.

"As we stated at the time, we have serious questions around the governance of the game and suitability of the tests for club owners and directors.

"It is also worth noting for those unfamiliar with our groups that, primarily, we are volunteers and we work on inclusion within the sport because we love football.

"No football fan should be excluded because of their gender identity or sexual orientation.

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"Our work in this area will continue, and we shall continue to raise the case of human rights — whether in relation to the Saudi Arabian takeover of Newcastle United or the hosting of the World Cup 2022 in Qatar or issues around inclusion on the terraces in the UK.

"Whilst any member leaving Pride in Football is a sad moment, we would like to reiterate our commitment to campaign for LGBT+ inclusion, visibility and acceptance in sport and society."

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