Alan Shearer is being lined up for a sensational return to Newcastle United as part of a full-blown American takeover.
The Mirror says Shearer is the new front runner after his odds of taking change at St James' Park yesterday tumbled from 9-1 to 2-1, making him favourite ahead of interim manager Joe Kinnear.
La Galaxy owner and sports magnate Philip Anschutz, who took David Beckham to the States and has a £5billion fortune, is one of the investors looking to buy the club from Mike Ashley for a cut-price £230million. Anschutz's AEG group owns the O2 Arena in London, is the world's second largest host of music and entertainment events, has a half share of MLS side Houston Dynamo, several ice hockey teams and a 50 per cent holding in Swedish football club Hammarby.
Two serious bidders remain in the race and other US tycoons with sporting interests include Clark Hunt, owner of FC Dallas and NFL outfit Kansas City Chiefs who is a rival of Anschutz.
Insiders on Tyneside have been told to expect the club to be in American hands by the end of the year.