FA bosses should resign over Sampson affair, says DCMS chair

Digital, Culture, Media and Sport chair Damian Collins has said the four FA bosses who faced the committee should consider resigning over the Mark Sampson affair.

FA chairman Greg Clarke, chief executive Martin Glenn, technical director Dan Ashworth and HR director Rachel Brace were the four representatives who were interrogated by 11 MPs on Wednesday.

The panel, headed by Collins, questioned the FA bosses on why the FA are withholding half of an £80,000 settlement from Eni Aluko and delved into the allegations that led to Sampson’s dismissal last month.

Later the FA chairman Greg Clarke apologised to both Aluko and Drew Spence after chief executive Martin Glenn initially defended the FA’s investigations into Aluko’s claims of discrimination.

Clarke also admitted his organisation had breached its duty of care to the players.

Panel chair Damian Collins has said the FA bosses should consider resigning

After the proceedings, Collins said: “I think it was disappointing that not even until right at the end was Greg Clarke prepared to admit the FA should apologise for failings in its process – quite serious failings in a process the individuals on that panel were responsible for.

“And it’s disappointing that not one of the people who had responsibility for taking charge of that process was prepared to admit they got it wrong.

Therefore, you have to question if they are the right people to take the organisation forward.”

Former England Women’s head coach Sampson was cleared of discrimination against Aluko by an internal review and an independent investigation led by barrister Katharine Newton.

The Conservative MP also described the FA’s first investigation into Aluko’s complaint, which was conducted by Ashworth and Brace in 2016, as “woefully inadequate” and said Clarke’s quickly withdrawn comment that claims of institutional racism at Wembley were “fluff” was “extraordinary”.

Collins added: “The question should be: does what you’ve seen today inspire confidence and do they understand the issues well enough to put in place the right systems to ensure it doesn’t happen again? And I’m not convinced.”