Another Bizarre Move By Mike Ashley

The Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley has made another one of those off-the-wall decisions, that he has made periodically since he bought Newcastle United six and a half years ago, and it will hardly improve his status in Newcastle.

mike ashley

Mike Ashley – another bizarre decision by the Newcastle owner

Local journalists from the Journal, Chronicle and Sunday Sun have been barred from using the media facilities at the club for some time now, but Ashley has indicated that he will not give access to the Newcastle players between games from now on, and those news outlets will have to pay for that privilege.

Not surprisingly, this is causing condemnation and consternation in the news media, since this has never been done before in football, and we’re not sure why Newcastle has to be the first club to come out with this rather crazy idea – and it cannot be just about the money.

The news is that the club is going to introduce an “exclusive access” package to those news outlets that pay for the access to players.

This is one of those strange moves by the Newcastle owner, and only he knows why he keeps making these types of odd and damaging decisions, and they certainly don’t bring him any sympathy from the Newcastle fans, or from the local media for that matter.

The move also begs the question about independence in broadcasting, and his current ban on local journalists  is presumably in part so that they will give him more positive coverage in the future – and the ban was because of the excess coverage of the march against Ashley in the Newcastle City Center.

But with moves like this, more positive publicity for Ashley is highly unlikely.

What do you think?

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14 comments so far

  • Dannyo

    Dec 12, 2013 at 7:50 AM

    Comment #1

    I had my rant yesterday on twitter on this matter, not gonna do it again.
    But if you want a good atmosphere around the club as well as in it, you have to open the doors, not shut them.
    At this point I generally just think Ashley hates the media, full stop.
    He never talks to them, so it can’t be far off.

    This isn’t about getting more money into the club, this is about MA wanting to control media. He’ll only further induce speculations in general and add a bit of paranoia and conspiracy theories to the mix.

    MA = One step forward, two backwards.
    And AP manages the team decently despite of it all.

  • Santon03

    Dec 12, 2013 at 8:03 AM

    Comment #2

    Good!! less media spining the facts.
    Good publicity for the club is how well we do on the pitch not off it. Saying smart things and horrible performance on the pitch won’t help.
    less BS stories will be good for the team and the club.

  • valle

    Dec 12, 2013 at 8:04 AM

    Comment #3

    Ashley is a curse on this club, and I cant wait till the day he cast his eyes on another cash cow (Rangers?) and sells us. He has done a few good things, but not for NUFC, but rather for himself. We dont need an oil sheik owner, but rather someone who have enough finances to buy us outright without putting the club further in debth, and if its not to much to ask for, actually care a bit for NUFC?

  • alienhunter

    Dec 12, 2013 at 8:22 AM

    Comment #4

    Newcastle have been labelled the PL ‘clown’ club for too long. The amount of negative, sensationalist nonsense written about us i in the press is ridiculous – they know how to play on the simplistic ‘lets protest!’ victim, drama queen mentality of some of our fan base, and simply stoke the fire.

    I am no MA fan, but I actually fully understand and agree with this decision.

  • firebug666

    Dec 12, 2013 at 8:33 AM

    Comment #5

    This is probably to do with the recent Cabaye interview, and if so it is a good idea. This will stop the press from asking leading questions and then printing the answer out of context. How many times do the people on here complain about press stories being BS? The simple truth is if the club control who talks to our players, what questions are asked and what answers are given, then they can stop any speculation, or the press from trying to engineer player moves, but most of all, they can stop any sort of bad feelings spreading through the dressing room, and players having to explain themselves following such interviews.

  • martoon

    Dec 12, 2013 at 8:45 AM

    Comment #6

    I can actually see the logic of this – the press sell a lot of papers, advertising space etc. based on sports stories that they get for free – Ashley’s argument is they should pay for access, interviews etc that will ulitimately make them money. However the press would argue that they are giving the club free publicity and so increasing the clubs appeal, gate revenue etc.

  • Papiss9

    Dec 12, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    Comment #7

    Agree with this, the amount of press is allways more when there are some negative things happening. The media want it to be a circus. When things are going well they rather focus on details rather than the whole picture, which on the pitch right now is very positive.

    Before the season they tried to make a crisis in Newcastle, especially after 4-0 defeat. It’s obvious for everyone to see that the players work hard for the team and try to do their best and this season has gone well so far (ofcourse we have bad games, we are not real madrid og barcelona)

    Newcastle will never control every game for both halves.. Not even the best teams do that. Therefore we might look bad against teams like hull sometimes. Swansea another example. I dont like it, but in todays football very few teams walk over their opponent game after game. For example the game away against palace will not be easy, Pulis has done his “magic” there. Look at the points before and after, plus very few conceded goals.

    someone said our only deserved victories this year is against chelsea, manu and one more (can’t remember)

    totally disagree with that.

    Cardiff, norwich, villa, wba was fully deserved. To be clear, if a team lead by one goal and the opposition has a chance in the 85. min which could have been a goal doesen’t mean the victory is not deserved.

    Can’t wait for the southampton-game, I think it will be a quality game for the neutral aswell, and we win 2-1. HWTL!!

  • Tino99

    Dec 12, 2013 at 9:49 AM

    Comment #8

    I am not a huge MA fan either but i have to admit this is one of the best things MA has done!!!! Stops all this transfer chat about our players which is unsettling. This is especially good since we are coming up to the transfer window plus we are currently on a winning roll and for that to be ruined would be bloody annoying.

    Come on the TOON. If we can win all the games up to the City match (maybe not the arsenal one) then we will be right up there in CL territory.

  • lesh

    Dec 12, 2013 at 10:14 AM

    Comment #9

    The man’s mad, maad ah tell ye, maad!

  • lesh

    Dec 12, 2013 at 10:17 AM

    Comment #10

    firebug666, you might just have something in you comments. Could club argue that by stopping the media having unfettered access to players, doing so might just be in the players’s interests?

  • Sav

    Dec 12, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    Comment #11

    I hope this includes the media wing of Sports Direct – source of some of the most scurrilous stories of late. Mashley is probably so chuffed with getting his PR mouthpiece to pen JFK’s pieces for the programme he’d like to extend it to having her write the national press copy on NUFC. If he thinks this will get his club better press, he is in for an awakening. Journos have memories.

  • Whumpie

    Dec 12, 2013 at 1:21 PM

    Comment #12

    hang on – are people seriously suggesting that keeping press out will REDUCE the amount of made-up bullshit written about us??


  • Jeff from Benwell

    Dec 12, 2013 at 8:09 PM

    Comment #13

    Ooooh journo’s have memories.
    I’m shitting meself
    Remembering years ago in “The Printers Pie” the only thing Gibson remembered was how many pints he’d scammed off of naive punters.
    The only journo worth any respect is George Caulkin

  • Jeff from Benwell

    Dec 12, 2013 at 8:24 PM

    Comment #14

    valle 3

    The words trip of your tongue enticingly but your command of english lets you down.
    Google “cash cow” and you will learn that the worst example in the world of such a beast is NUFC.
    In fact anything less like a cash cow would be hard to find.
    Never mind son it sounds good.
    Never let the truth get in the way of a good blog.


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