Newcastle investigating bar brawl involving Under-23 stars and Steve Harper's son
Newcastle United have launched an investigation after a number of their Under-23 stars were involved in a bar brawl - clashing with friends of academy manager and former first-team goalkeeper Steve Harper's son, James.
The incident is thought to have occurred in the city centre last week, when the clash turned physical and punches were exchanged between the players and a separate group, one that included James Harper.
It is thought that James was not one of the aggressors of the clash and actually helped tend to those who had been hurt, including one who sustained a facial injury.
Though the police were not called to the scene, Newcastle opted to launch an immediate investigation into what happened once Harper had caught wind of the fight, which occurred after the players had hired a table at Tup Tup Palace - a nightclub best known for its ties to with reality TV show Geordie Shore.
While Harper has reportedly held talks with a number of the players involved over their conduct, he has now had to step back from the investigation given the obvious conflict of interest due to his son’s presence and the fact he knows the boys with whom his own players were fighting with, though formal disciplinary action is being taken against several players.
According to the Daily Mail, one source revealed: "Only at Newcastle United could this happen. There was some bad blood between one of the players and one of James’ friends. They already knew each other.
"A player was being gobby and it then turned ugly. Another player steamed in and has hurt a lad. But how stupid can you be, getting into a fight with the friends of the academy manager’s son?
"Steve has a big job on his hands sorting that place out, it’s been a mess for years."
Harper left Steve Bruce’s first-team staff to take up his role within the academy, after spending 20 seasons at St James Park - making 199 appearances in the process.
If the Under-23 side was not enough in turmoil already, they currently are without a manager after Chris Hogg joined MK Dons as assistant manager last month before interim appointment Gary Caldwell lasted just three weeks.
The Mirror has reached out to Newcastle United for comment on the matter.