Manchester United has issued a press conference ban to four journalists from major outlets ahead of Erik ten Hag’s pre-Chelsea match press conference.
The journalists/outlets banned from the press conference are Kaveh Solhekhol of Sky Sports, the Manchester Evening News’ chief Manchester United reporter Samuel Luckhurst, David McDonnell from The Mirror, and Rob Dawson from ESPN.
This was the statement from a club spokesperson:
“We’re taking action against a number of news organisations today, not for publishing stories we don’t like, but for doing so without contacting us first to give us the opportunity to comment, challenge or contextualise. We believe this is an important principle to defend and we hope it can lead to a re-set in the way we work together.”
The ban comes after multiple reports referring to a rift between players and the manager (surprise surprise), a well-known phase in what we can only describe as the post-SAF spiral cycle.
Journalistic integrity is important, but censorship is also bad. The club and manager are lashing out, which is probably bad, but the players are apparently also lashing (leaking?) out in the press, which is also bad. All in all, it’s bad, and the bad times may only just be starting with Chelsea, Liverpool, and Bayern Munich all coming up soon.
There is a very good chance Erik ten Hag is the next manager sacked after a period of chaos and losing the dressing room. The only real hope, regardless of who the manager is, is that the ownership shakeup and new hierarchy overseeing football operations is capable of cleaning house and bringing in the right players to fix what has been a broken squad for nearly a decade now.