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By ESPN Staff

Toon were 'on the brink of folding' - Mort

Newcastle chairman Chris Mort claims his club were on the brink of 'folding like a pack of cards' until the former regime was bought out.

Mort reports that the Freddy Shepherd era at St James' Park lurched into a perilous position shortly before Newcastle was taken over by Mike Ashley four months ago.

'We were surprised at how bad the financial position was - they were in big trouble,' he told The Sun.

'If the old board had not re-financed the club by the end of the financial year on June 30, it would have folded like a pack of cards.'