Sports

Pressure mounts on FA over Mark Sampson sacking

Pressure mounts on FA over Mark Sampson sacking

Mark Sampson's appointment as England Women manager in 2013 has been questioned by Women in Football, given that the Football Association were first made aware of allegations about his past controversies while he was applying for the national team role.

The FA said the report "revealed clear evidence of inappropriate and unacceptable behavior by a coach".

The probe, sparked by allegations made by more than one of his Bristol players, took almost a year to complete, and while Sampson was found fit to remain England's coach, he was ordered to undergo training on "professional boundaries appropriate to a coaching role". The FA said that a "safeguarding assessment" in 2015 before the World Cup determined that Sampson "did not pose a risk working in the game" but he was still told to undertake a program to "emphasize the professional boundaries appropriate to a coaching role".

Martin Glenn did not take up the role of chief executive until March 2015, so can not be held responsible for the decision to appoint Sampson, but he chose not to ask for details of the safeguarding investigation until last week and has backed the Welshman in the bitter dispute with Aluko, including agreeing to pay her £80,000 to settle the case earlier this year.

Sampson, 34, was sacked as manager of the Lionesses yesterday after evidence came to light of his "inappropriate and unacceptable behaviour" in a previous job at Bristol Academy.

Glenn said that he made a decision to fire Sampson after he was given the full report of the probe last week.

However, senior FA officials did not read the unit's report until last week, having been alerted to its contents by undisclosed sources.

The FA said the sacking of Sampson was unconnected to allegations of bullying and harassment by the former England player Eni Aluko. Mark had overstepped the professional boundaries between player and coach. We thought the conduct issues raised in the report was the problem.

Collins said: " I think he (Glenn) has got hard questions to answer.

"I know the FA still stand by their investigation".

The Guardian reported last month that the FA paid Aluko more than $100,000 in alleged hush money to "avoid disruption" ahead of Euro 2017.

"Speaking on Sky News, he said: "(Sampson) should never have been appointed in the first place and action should have been taken a long time ago.

The FA clarified that the claims involved more than one player.

As reported by the Guardian, when Glenn and Chairman Greg Clarke were made aware of its contents last week, they acted swiftly and Glenn told Sampson he was out yesterday afternoon - just hours after he had watched his team beat Russian Federation 6-0 in a World Cup qualifier. "To say: 'Actually was there information readily available to the FA that had they sought it out they would've terminated much earlier?' Be it Martin Glenn or whoever, if it's found that they ignored advice and warnings that were clear then I think their position does become untenable".


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