David Moyes was “rude and unhelpful,” Mark Hughes seldom talks to the local press, while Billy Davies regularly “snarled his way through press conferences.”
Those are some of the revelations contained in a recent article exploring newspapers’ relationships with football managers at their local clubs.
It followed a series of rows between regional newspapers and their local football clubs which have led to some titles being banned from the press box.
Newcastle United recently lifted a 14-month ban on the Newcastle Chronicle and its sister titles while earlier this month the Swindon Advertiser was barred from reporting from Swindon Town press conferences.
According to Alastair, David Moyes had “little or no time for the press, was rude and unhelpful, and made no distinction between national and local.”
However he reported better relations with current Toffees boss Martinez, who he described as “sophisticated, media-friendly, charming and appreciates the position and value of a local media.”
Likewise Nottingham Post editor Mike Sassi reported a poor relationship with former Nottingham Forest manager Billy Davies, with access to a single press conference every week “which Davies and his assistant manager snarled their way through begrudgingly.”
However, under Stuart Pearce, Forest are now more “open and accommodating” with players regularly made available for interview.
The Sentinel, Stoke’s sports editor Keith Wales reported “excellent links” with former Stoke City manager Tony Pulis, whose mobile phone number he had.
New boss Mark Hughes, on the other hand, only talks to the press at pre and post-match briefings.
Peter summed up: “The issue isn’t going to go away. Football clubs will continue to review the value of their relationship with newspapers.
“And with newspapers never likely to pay for access (apart from any matter of principle, they simply can’t afford it) there is a danger they will increasingly rely on crumbs from the clubs’ tables. But football clubs need to keep one eye on the future.
“There is no guarantee broadcasters will always pour money into football. The Premier League might out-price itself, fans may grow disillusioned with an institution headed up by a discredited organisation such as FIFA, and who will be there for the clubs if their bubbles fade and die?
“In the meantime, without league intervention, journalists will simply have to hope that all clubs learn to appreciate the value of newspapers, respect the fact they represent the supporters and give them the help they need to do their jobs properly.
“Sadly, at the moment, that looks as likely as Newcastle lifting the Champions League trophy.”