Newcastle United’s decision to block access to it its ground by certain reporters and newspapers has been roundly condemned by the National Union of Journalist, describing the move as ‘childish’, ‘desperate’ & ‘over-sensitive’.
In a statement the NUJ’s Newcastle branch said: "Newcastle United are at it again. Desperately over-sensitive about what people are saying about them, their first reaction is to try to manage and manipulate press coverage – instead of trying to give people some reason to say something more positive about them. Their problem, of course, is the football. If they were a bit better at playing football, their fans might have something more positive to say about them.
"But then, they have a lot of form for such childish behaviour. Who are they going to speak to next week – and who are they going to blank? Who will they ask to be their new best friends, and who will they turn their backs on?
"They should take care. To turn their backs on the sports reporters is to risk cutting themselves out of the conversation – driving themselves yet further towards irrelevance.“
It is not the first time the club has turned against the press, having previously put in place a blanket ban on all local media from press conferences and press boxes.