AddThis SmartLayers

McClaren under fire for ‘PR disaster’ after first-day press ban

Steve McClarenA regional Sunday newspaper columnist has called for a football manager to turn around a “PR disaster” caused by his new club on his first day in the job.

As previously reported on HTFP, regional press journalists were among those denied access to Steve McClaren’s unveiling as the new boss at Newcastle United on Wednesday.

Now Eric Paylor, columnist for Newcastle’s Sunday Sun, has called on McClaren to “get back to PR basics” in his dealings with the media.

Eric spent more than 25 years covering Middlesbrough FC, the team McClaren managed between 2001 and 2006, for the Teesside Gazette before retiring in 2011.

Describing his experiences with McClaren, pictured above left, during his first days at Middlesbrough, Eric wrote: “Steve McClaren’s first-day PR disaster on Tyneside will have left many Boro fans open-mouthed.

“After all, the former Boro boss was the supreme master of media manipulation during his five years on Teesside.

“His illustrious spell as Boro manager was matched by his ability to mix well with both the national and local press.

“McClaren had time for anybody and everybody when he was revealed to the world’s media during a showpiece extravaganza almost 14 years to the day at the Riverside Stadium.

“He chatted to all and sundry, exuded a friendly confidence which implied ‘Don’t worry, I will succeed’ and never stopped smiling from the first minute to the last.

“There was an immediate bonding and feel-good factor which was experienced both by the media, and also the fans when the interviews were reproduced on TV, radio and in the newspapers.”

At Wednesday’s conference in Newcastle, journalists from the Sun’s daily sister titles, The Chronicle and The Journal, were among those barred along with reporters from The Northern Echo.

Eric described how, in stark contrast, McClaren had organised two informal face-to-face meetings, for local and national reporters, during his first two weeks in the job at Middlesbrough.

He added McClaren’s policy towards the press left him in “now doubts” as to how much he valued the media.

Wrote Eric: “McClaren created his own image, but he manipulated it too.

“It’s important he takes a leaf out for his time at the Boro and gets back to PR basics.”


You can follow all replies to this entry through the comments feed.
  • June 16, 2015 at 9:25 am

    Well done Steve McClaren! The Trinity owned trio of Thomson house titles have sniped at every manager since Joe Harvey and show no support for the club. These dying newspapers are dependent on Newcastle United for their very survival because the football club is the only common theme that binds the audiences together.

    The observation about the Northern Echo is laughable. This is a newspaper that covers the heartlands of Sunderland and Boro. I’d love to know how many magpies rely on the Northern Echo for news from St James park!

    Report this comment

    Like this comment(0)
  • June 16, 2015 at 10:18 am

    Shteve treats the press with disdain wherever he goes. After witnessing his so called press conferences in Derby and Nottingham I can reveal he makes it quite clear he’s the main man, and not in a good way.

    Report this comment

    Like this comment(2)
  • June 16, 2015 at 12:34 pm

    Remember, this is the same man who stood under an umbrella in charge of England at a rain soaked Wembley and tried to fake a Dutch accent in Holland.

    Report this comment

    Like this comment(1)
  • June 16, 2015 at 1:40 pm

    Newcastle United find innovative way to get it wrong shock. Oh for the good old days of free speech and accountability …. remember Joe Kinnear’s debut press conference rant? Now there’s free speech – oh wait, 52 swear words in six minutes, surely no-one was afraid of something like that from Wor Shteeve were they?

    Report this comment

    Like this comment(2)