It would be no surprise to see the Newcastle United takeover waved through after more than a year of waiting but it might be dependent on one single issue - that of separation.

That's the view of our football editor Mark Douglas who admits that he'd be 'surprised' if the takeover doesn't eventually go through but reckons if Mike Ashley's legal team fails to prove the Public Investment Fund and Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman are separate entities, then that may be the end of the saga.

Speaking on The Everything is Black and White Podcast, he said: "I've always said that the pressure on the Premier League is going to have to be resolved one way or the other, there's going to have to be a resolution where this happens or it doesn't.

READ MORE: Mike Ashley's confidence that a Toon takeover can go through

"Now the pressure on the Premier League, I'd be surprised if it doesn't happen but not entirely shocked because it's taken this long now.

"But if they don't win the point about separation then I'd say it's unlikely it would happen at that point."

There's confidence within Ashley's camp that the takeover will go through once these legal battles - the arbitration and CAT - are concluded.

Douglas however is wary of such a showing of confidence, simply because of the uncertainty of such battles.

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"There's potential to get carried away with this supposed confidence - you have to be careful with those who talk about confidence with the takeover because we've been here before.

"We've been here with Staveley's camp who spoke about the deal being done imminently or next week, and that for me is a big concern really for me. No one knows who this is going to turn out, and it's all good Mike Ashley talking about confidence but he doesn't know how it's going to go.

"He might be confident, he might have his lawyers given him confidence but none of us knows, none of us knows how this going to play out. I kind of step back and say 'let's just let it play out.'

"But clearly, he is confident that it is going to happen at some point but we know the other side doesn't really talk, so we don't know how they are feeling."