Mike Ashley bans newspapers from asking Steve Bruce questions
It was 17 months ago, Mike Ashley through his minion Lee Charnley, admitted that the club had failed Newcastle fans.
The owner instructing his club’s MD (chief paper clip counter) to state that the communication with supporters hadn’t been good enough.
Lee Charnley going on to commit to far better communication moving forward…
Those promises came on the very first day of the 2019/20 season before Steve Bruce took charge of his first NUFC match. Newcastle at home to Arsenal on 11 August 2019 and Lee Charnley having his very own column in the match programme (see below).
We have learnt over a considerable amount of time to treat promises made by Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley with the utmost scepticism and sure enough, we haven’t been disappointed.
The club’s communication with Newcastle fans has somehow managed to be even worse in these past 17 months, reaching a record all-time low during this virus-impacted period.
In reality of course, that Lee Charnley column was really only about nine words and dressed up to make it to be about communications with supporters, Mike Ashley instead doing everything he could to try and make out that Rafa was the villain of the situation when leaving Newcastle, Ashley’s PR people including the following in ‘Charnley’s’ programme article: ‘let’s be clear, he [Rafa Benitez] moved to China for money.’
Coming back to the present day and things have now reached farcical proportions, in terms of Newcastle United refusing to update the supporters on pretty much anything of importance.
Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley needing to answer for refusing to keep their communication promises from 17 months ago.
However, they have now managed to sink to an all-time new low on Monday morning.
Mike Ashley banning the journalists from all the newspapers from asking questions at Steve Bruce’s press conference ahead of the Leeds match.
Instead, only the small handful from TV and radio who seem to always Steve Bruce give Steve Bruce (and Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley) a very east ride, have been allowed to ask any questions…
NUFC and Steve Bruce have barred newspapers from asking questions at press conferences. North East or North Korea?
— Craig Hope (@CraigHope_DM) January 25, 2021
Steve Bruce has concluded his press conference and took no questions from written media. Video call cut off after just 4 reporters from TV asked questions. First time in 20 years that’s happened. P*** poor from club and Bruce #nufc
— Simon Bird (@SimonBird_) January 25, 2021
Steve Bruce didn’t take questions from written journalists. #nufc
— Miles Starforth (@milesstarforth) January 25, 2021
What an absolute disgrace of a football club.
Lee Charnley in the match programme for the Arsenal match on Sunday 11 August 2019:
“We go into today’s match following changes on and off the pitch over the summer months.
“I appreciate it has been at times, and certainly during the early part of the break, a period of uncertainty for supporters.
“We want to communicate clearly and proactively, but it is important that we do so at the right time.
“Sometimes we must adopt a ‘no comment’ policy and I accept that can be – and has been – frustrating. There are reasons behind that approach.
“Often, there are legalities at play or we may take the decision in order to respect the integrity of a process or the individuals involved. What we won’t do is fuel speculation by offering a running commentary.
“Instead, when we have something definitive to say, we will say it, as we did as soon as Rafa’s position became clear.
“We understand and expected the disappointment that Rafa’s departure caused. We strongly believe we went beyond what could reasonably be asked in order to keep him. But let’s be clear, he moved to China for money.
“Whilst I have stated above that I felt our approach during the summer was necessary, I accept we need to do more from a communication perspective moving forward.
“There is certainly a need to communicate more as a club and to let fans know where we are heading collectively.
“That goes beyond the responsibility of just the head coach or manager in isolation; something we have relied on far too heavily in the past.
“We want to give you more of an insight into what happens across the club and you will therefore be hearing more from me, as you are today…”
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