Newcastle United has denied reports that the club is withdrawing the media’s access to interviews with players and staff unless the club is paid a fee.
According to a report in the Newcastle Chronicle by sportswriter Mark Douglas, the club informed reporters that organisations would in future have to pay for access to interviews.
Douglas wrote: “They have told reporters from national titles who are working in the North east that they will no longer be given access to their players between matches this season and will instead give those ‘privileges’ to organisations that pay them.
“This has never happened before. They are the first Premier League football club to try to do this and it will be interesting to see what kind of reaction it garners.”
However, a spokesman for Newcastle United told The Drum: “The story is categorically untrue. The story that appeared yesterday is nonsense.”
The story followed recent controversies at Newcastle United involving the media, the latest of which saw a ban issued to local outlets after the club claimed their coverage of matters relating to owner Mike Ashley were overly negative.
The Newcastle Chronicle was one of the titles banned, alongside the Journal and the Sunday Sun.
The club declined to expand on what may have prompted the story, and The Drum was awaiting comment from Douglas at time of writing.