Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer and Denton Wilde Sapte has bagged lead roles on the latest takeover attempt at a major English football club, as billionaire Mike Ashley prepares a £133m offer for Newcastle United.

Freshfields corporate partner Christopher Mort led a team advising Ashley on his acquisition of a 41.6% stake in the club from Newcastle United president Sir John Hall. Ashley bought the stake through special-purpose vehicle St James’ Holdings for £55m, it was announced yesterday (23 May).