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Newcastle players decline media duties amid bonuses row

Newcastle Central MP Chi Onwurah reads out a petition from Newcastle United fans asking the government to act against unsuitable club owners.

Newcastle players refused to film "walk-up" shots used by broadcasters Sky Sports and BT Sport for starting lineups amid a dispute with the club over bonuses.

Members of the squad also declined to give interviews after their two most recent friendlies against Augsburg and Braga.

The BBC reported that the dispute comes after the players and Newcastle owner Mike Ashley failed to reach agreement over performance-related bonuses.

It means that with Newcastle opening their season against Tottenham Hotspur -- a match being broadcast live -- Sky Sports "has yet to gain all the material that it considers essential to its production," according to the Times.

The paper reported that Sky had registered a complaint with the Premier League after being unable to obtain the "walk-up" shots needed for its coverage.

Speaking after his side had been beaten by Braga, Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez said: "Things are not going well off the pitch, and you can see a reflection of that on the pitch."

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