One of Mark Sampson’s former rivals for the England manager’s job has said rumours of his inappropriate relationships with female players at Bristol Academy were “common knowledge” in the women’s game before he was appointed.
Keith Boanas, now Watford Ladies coach, said he “cannot believe” those who recruited Sampson in December 2013 had not heard concerns about the 34-year-old’s conduct at Bristol where he was first a development coach and later managed the first team. Pressure is mounting on the Football Association’s chief executive, Martin Glenn, technical director, Dan Ashworth, and other senior figures at the governing body to explain how Sampson remained in such a high-profile role for almost four years. The FA has also been heavily criticised for its handling of allegations made by the England striker Eni Aluko about bullying and racism, first revealed in the Guardian, during Sampson’s reign.
The Welshman’s contract was terminated this week after Glenn apparently became aware of the “full detail” of safeguarding allegations made against Sampson in March 2014. Glenn arrived as the FA chief executive in May 2015 and said this week he became aware of the report in October of that year and saw the full version only last week.
But Boanas, who was overlooked for the England job, said the claims were in effect an open secret. “They were common knowledge,” he told the Guardian. “It reverberated around the game and I was told of specific things on numerous occasions. If they weren’t substantiated rumours, Brian Propp Youth Jersey then they may have gone: ‘OK we’re going to go with you’ but to come out now and say: ‘It’s only just come to light’ is hard to believe. I’m married to a player I coached but ours is a serious relationship and we’ve always kept our private life away from football.”
Boanas, who is married to the former England goalkeeper Pauline Cope-Boanas, said the FA abandoned the criteria it stated were necessary for the job of manager in order to appoint Sampson. “They said the candidate must have a professional licence and international experience but Mark had neither.”
Mo Marley, the head coach of England women’s Under-19s and Marieanne Spacey, http://www.officialflyersteamonline.com/Brayden_Schenn_Jersey England women’s player and coach developer, have emerged as leading contenders to replace Sampson as first team manager. Boanas believes the FA will deliberately seek out a woman for the job and that male coaches may all be tarred with the same brush in future.
“I certainly think with the situation with Mark they’ll go more towards a female coach because that’s considered safe,” said Boanas, “but that’s almost sexist in another way to assume that just because it’s a female coach that the same thing can’t happen.”
Ashworth sat on the four-strong panel that recruited Sampson along with the then technical director, Sir Trevor Brooking, Club England’s managing director, Adrian Bevington, and Kelly Simmons, then national game and women’s football director. Ashworth is the most senior current employee who worked for the FA through the entire relevant period. Jose Juan Barea Womens Jersey He will be called on by parliament’s culture, media and sport select committee to explain why the FA continued to employ Sampson after safeguarding concerns were first raised.
The details of the full report remained confidential after it was decided Sampson did not pose a safeguarding risk and was ordered to undergo an education course.
Glenn said it was only because external figures approached the governing body in the wake of the http://www.mavericksteamonline.com/Jose_Barea_Jersey Aluko furore and urged him to look at the full detail of the Bristol allegations that he requested the full version of the 2015 report.