Newcastle squad in bonus revolt

Newcastle United’s squad are refusing to cooperate with the media because of an ongoing dispute with the club over bonuses for the new season.

Players refused to film ‘walk-up shots’ on Monday at the club’s training ground. Such clips are used by TV companies during pre-match when showing the starting XI.

The players have also skipped media duties and post-match interviews after two recent pre-season friendlies.

They declined to speak to cameras after Saturday’s 1-0 friendly home loss to FC Augsburg and again after the 4-0 defeat at Braga last Wednesday.

The ongoing dispute is related to a end-of-season bonus. The squad shared a £4 million bonus last year for avoiding relegation.

The players have reportedly failed to reach an agreement with owner Mike Ashley over a similar bonus for this season.

Newcastle play Tottenham at St James Park in their Premier League opener on Saturday.

Failure to comply with Premier League media obligations could lead to the club being fined.

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez said after the Braga loss that fans should “be concerned”.

“Things are not going well off the pitch and you can see a reflection of that on the pitch,” he added.

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