Journalists have revealed that Newcastle United will not hold a press conference when new manager Steve McClaren is crowned, something that it is expecteded will happen later today.
Instead they are inviting a small number of ‘carefully selected media partners’ who will then get the opportunity of covering the story.
This will leave fans in no doubt that the media partners selected, are on the basis of either paying for the privilege, or having shown a willingness to swap favours with the Mike Ashley regime in their ongoing coverage of the club. Anything else would be plain daft, unless you believe they pick the media involved because they are the most talented journalists…
The Telegraph are the paper who broke the Carver/Stone sacked story yesterday and their north east journalist Luke Edwards was one of those who today confirmed that Newcastle United won’t conduct the kind of normal press conference that decent clubs do when unveiling a new manager:
“McClaren won’t be holding a press conf Only speaking to carefully selected media partners. Real shame, missed opportunity for fresh start.”
Supporters who wanted to take Mike Ashley at his word about this being a brave new world after his end of season interview, will wonder exactly what has changed.
When Lee Charnley was named Managing Director on 7 April 2014, the press release (no press conference then either!) from the club included this quote from him:
“We are also committed to our current strategy in relation to communication between the Club and its supporters. At the beginning of the season we launched a new Fans Forum, with members representing our diverse fanbase. It has been an open, honest and productive forum and it will continue to be our primary means of direct supporter communication and engagement.
Towards the end of last (2014/15) season, the Fans Forum asked the club to have an urgent meeting to address the mess the club was in and the challenges faced, Lee Charnley sent the following reply promising a meeting BEFORE the end of the season:
Lee Charnley letter to NUFC Fans Forum members (Made Public 26 April 2015)
“In order to discuss the issues you raise, I intend to bring forward the date of our next Fans Forum meeting which was originally scheduled for the end of the season.
“I am sure Forum members past and present will agree that the Club has been open and transparent during all interactions, including meetings and correspondence, and this next meeting will be no different.
“In my opinion, the introduction of the Forum has been productive for all the parties involved and, as we move forward, the Forum will continue to be one of our preferred forms of fan communication and engagement.
“With five games now remaining of the season – including three at St. James’ Park, I would ask you, indeed all supporters, to get fully behind John Carver and the players as they look to finish the season as strongly as possible.
“When St. James’ Park is loud and supportive of the team on the pitch, it does make a huge difference.”
“We accept mistakes have been made and understand you raise these issues because you want the best for your football club.
“Please be assured we want the same – we want to give you a football club you can be proud of and a team you feel passionate to support.”
As of last Wednesday (3 June 2015) the club still hadn’t replied to repeated requests from the Fans Forum members asking when this fabled meeting was going to be – it is now 45 days since Lee Charnley promised there would be an urgent meeting organised.
Can you really believe anything that they say?