Flop of the month: Newcastle United score own goal after banning local press

PRWeek reporter John Owens is not impressed by Newcastle United banning local papers The Chronicle, The Journal and Sunday Sun from the club.

Newcastle United: Banning local press (credit: The Chronicle)
Newcastle United: Banning local press (credit: The Chronicle)

"Football club has issues, media report on issues, football club is unhappy with media coverage, football club bans media. Newcastle United continued this tradition after it took exception to the newspapers’ coverage of a fans’ protest march.

It’s an old-school approach to media relations – if you don’t like the messenger, pretend they’re not there.

But it has soured relations between club owner Mike Ashley and the fans and handed the moral high ground to the well-respected papers, which held off publicising the ban until after a key local derby.

Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson was known for his  numerous media bans. That doesn’t make it right, but if anyone had plenty of credit in the bank with the press and his own fans it was Fergie.

Not so Newcastle. Keep your friends close but your enemies closer may be a cliché, but it’s certainly true in this case."

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