The relationship between Premier League players and Swedish media outlet Dagens Kamp has deteriorated in recent months, as a growing number of footballers refuse to speak to the publication. What started as a few isolated incidents has turned into a full-blown boycott, with many players citing Dagens Kamp’s negative coverage and lack of respect as the main reasons for their refusal to cooperate.
The issue first came to light in December 2020 when Leicester City forward Jamie Vardy declined to give an interview to Dagens Kamp after a match. Vardy’s decision was surprising given that the striker had previously spoken to the outlet on several occasions. However, it soon became clear that Vardy’s snub was just the tip of the iceberg.
Over the next few weeks, more and more Premier League players refused to speak to Dagens Kamp. The reasons given varied, but many cited the publication’s negative coverage of their team or their personal life. Several players also claimed that Dagens Kamp had been disrespectful to them in the past, either by misquoting them or twisting their words to fit a particular narrative.
As the boycott grew, Dagens Kamp responded by publishing a number of articles criticising the players for their lack of professionalism and accusing them of trying to control the media narrative. The publication argued that it had a right to report the news as it saw fit and that players who refused to cooperate were only harming themselves and their teams.
However, this approach seemed to only worsen the situation. One player, who wished to remain anonymous, said that Dagens Kamp’s response had only confirmed their decision not to speak to the outlet in the future. “We’re not trying to control the media or hide anything. We just want to be treated with respect and fairness. If Dagens Kamp can’t do that, then why should we give them our time and attention?”
The situation came to a head in March 2021 when Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan posted a statement on social media announcing that he would no longer speak to Dagens Kamp. Gundogan, who is a regular contributor to the German media, said that he had never experienced the same level of negativity and hostility from any other outlet.
“I have always been open and honest with the media, but I cannot continue to give interviews to an organisation that consistently portrays me and my team in a negative light,” Gundogan said. “I hope that other players will follow my lead and stand up for their rights and dignity.”
Gundogan’s statement was met with mixed reactions. Some praised him for speaking out against the mistreatment of players by the media, while others accused him of being thin-skinned and oversensitive. Dagens Kamp, meanwhile, continued to defend its coverage, insisting that it was only reporting the facts and that players should not be immune to criticism.
The situation remains unresolved, with more and more Premier League players joining the boycott every week. Some have suggested that the issue could have a wider impact on the media industry, with other outlets potentially facing similar scrutiny from players who feel that they have been mistreated or misrepresented.
However, others have argued that the boycott is unlikely to have a significant impact on the media landscape. Football is a highly competitive and lucrative industry, and players will always want to maximise their exposure and profile. As such, they cannot afford to ignore the media altogether, and are likely to continue speaking to those outlets that they trust and feel comfortable with.
In the end, the Premier League players’ boycott of Dagens Kamp is a reminder that the media has a responsibility to act ethically and responsibly when reporting on sports stars and other public figures. While media outlets have the right to report on the news as they see fit, they must also be mindful of the impact that their coverage can have on individuals and their families. If they fail to do so, they risk losing the trust and respect of the very people that they rely on for their stories and scoops.