THE Football Association has apologised to two England players after an inquiry concluded they had been subjected to racial remarks by former women’s team boss Mark Sampson, The Sun reports.
FA chief executive Martin Glenn made the 11th-hour apology to Chelsea stars Eni Aluko and Drew Spence just before he and fellow bigwigs were due to appear before a committee of MPs.
Katharine Newton, in her second inquiry and the FA’s THIRD try to investigate Aluko’s complaints of bullying, found Sampson had made discriminatory remarks.
Nigeria-born Aluko had complained that Sampson had made a joke about her family and Ebola before an England game and that he had asked mixed-race Londoner Spence how many times she had been arrested during a team meeting.
Although Sampson denied the allegations, Newton reviewed new evidence and concluded the remarks had been made and were racially discriminatory.
But Newton found Sampson was not racist and dismissed Aluko’s claim that she had been the victim of serial bullying by Sampson.
Aluko, who has won 102 caps, has not played for England since first raising her concerns about Sampson in May 2016.
Glenn said in a statement, “On behalf of The Football Association I would like to sincerely apologise to Eniola Aluko and Drew Spence.
“Based on new evidence submitted to independent Katharine Newton, she has now found that they were both subject to discriminatory remarks made by an FA employee. This is not acceptable.”
Meanwhile, Aluko sensationally accused Glenn of ‘blackmail’ on Wednesday after revealing he asked her to write a statement saying the FA was not institutionally racist in order to receive the second part of a pay-out from them, Daily Mail reports.
Aluko said the FA wanted to withhold the second part of the payment until after this summer’s European Championship in Holland, where Aluko worked as a pundit for Channel 4.
Aluko told the committee, “I had one meeting with Martin Glenn and he said if I wrote a statement that the Football Association is not institutionally racist, they would release the (second part of the) payment.”
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