Reporters from the Portsmouth News have again been granted access to their local Premier League side after the club excluded them from all press areas five months ago.
The News had been denied access by Portsmouth FC to training sessions, press conferences and to the press areas at home games in February after the Johnston Press owned title ran a story claiming the FA Cup, which Portsmouth won in 2008, had been damaged while in the club’s care.
News reporters were allowed back in last week to cover a pre-season home friendly, although the club have told Press Gazette the lifting of the ban had not yet been confirmed.
A club spokesman said: “The ban has been lifted with a view to it being official but we are still to sit down with them. We’ve let them into games as a gesture of goodwill but we will need to look back at how the story happened in the first place and look forward to how we work together in the future.”
News sports editor Howard Frost told Press Gazette relations between reporters and the club had returned to normal.
Frost said: “The club have been helpful in giving us access to players, although they are still a bit tentative about who we speak to.
“The ban hadn’t harmed our coverage too much as we managed to find ways around it. With Portsmouth being in the Premiership it wasn’t the toughest thing to still get the story.
Frost added: “The ban will not affect at all how we cover any negative stories in the future.”