Al­lardyce loses job as Eng­land man­ager af­ter news­pa­per st­ing

Malta Independent - - SPORT -

Sam Al­lardyce lost his job as Eng­land man­ager yes­ter­day af­ter one match and just 67 days in charge, pay­ing the price for dam­ag­ing com­ments to un­der­cover re­porters that were deemed “in­ap­pro­pri­ate” by the Eng­lish Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion.

Bri­tish news­pa­per The Daily Tele­graph pub­lished video of Al­lardyce ap­pear­ing to of­fer ad­vice on how to side­step an out­lawed player trans­fer prac­tice and also to ne­go­ti­ate a 400,000-pound pub­lic-speak­ing con­tract while talk­ing to re­porters pos­ing as busi­ness­men.

The FA acted swiftly, hold­ing emer­gency talks with Al­lardyce in Lon­don be­fore an­nounc­ing the end of his short-lived ten­ure by mu­tual con­sent.

“In light of the me­dia al­le­ga­tions that we’ve seen,” FA chief ex­ec­u­tive Martin Glenn said, “we’ve con­cluded — and Sam’s agreed — that his be­hav­ior has been in­ap­pro­pri­ate and frankly not what is ex­pected of an Eng­land man­ager.”

Asked about how Al­lardyce had re­acted, Glenn added: “I know per­son­ally that he is deeply, deeply up­set and deeply re­grets the er­ror of judge­ment, but I also think that he un­der­stands why The FA has had to take this tough de­ci­sion.”

The 61-year-old Al­lardyce was hired to his dream job on July 22 and had a con­tract through 2018. He is the short­est-serv­ing Eng­land man­ager.

“He ac­cepts he made a sig­nif­i­cant er­ror of judg­ment and has apol­o­gised,” the FA said in a state­ment. “How­ever, due to the se­ri­ous na­ture of his ac­tions, the FA and Al­lardyce have mu­tu­ally agreed to ter­mi­nate his con­tract with im­me­di­ate ef­fect.

“This is not a de­ci­sion that was taken lightly but the FA’s pri­or­ity is to pro­tect the wider in­ter­ests of the game and main­tain the high­est stan­dards of con­duct in foot­ball,” the state­ment con­tin­ued. “The man­ager of the Eng­land men’s se­nior team is a po­si­tion which must demon­strate strong lead­er­ship and show re­spect for the in­tegrity of the game at all times.”

Al­lardyce said he was “deeply dis­ap­pointed” with the FA’s de­ci­sion. “Al­though it was made clear dur­ing the recorded con­ver­sa­tions that any pro­posed ar­range­ments would need the FA’s full ap­proval,” Al­lardyce said, “I recog­nise I made some com­ments which have caused em­bar­rass­ment.”

Gareth South­gate, the man­ager of Eng­land’s un­der-21 side, will take charge of the se­nior team’s next four matches — against Malta, Slove­nia, Scot­land and Spain — while the FA searches for a new coach. Af­ter open­ing World Cup qual­i­fy­ing with a vic­tory in Slo­vakia, Eng­land plays Malta on Oct. 8 and Slove­nia on Oct. 11.

The Tele­graph pub­lished its un­der­cover in­ves­ti­ga­tion in its Tues­day edi­tion, un­der the front­page head­line: “Eng­land man­ager for sale.”

Al­lardyce met peo­ple he re­port­edly thought were rep­re­sen­ta­tives of an Asian firm. In a grainy, edited video, he is recorded as say­ing it was “not a prob­lem” to cir­cum­vent FA rules that stop third par­ties from own­ing the eco­nomic rights of play­ers. FIFA has banned third-party own­er­ship as a threat to the game’s in­tegrity be­cause in­vestors force trans­fers to make a profit.

“You can still get around it,” the for­mer Sun­der­land and West Ham man­ager said in the record­ing. “I mean ob­vi­ously the big money’s here.”

Al­lardyce told the un­der­cover re­porters that his pre­de­ces­sor Roy Hodg­son sent play­ers “all to sleep.” Al­lardyce also mim­icked Hodg­son’s speech im­ped­i­ment.

He also ques­tioned why Prince Wil­liam, who is pres­i­dent of the FA, did not ap­pear at last week’s Lon­don launch of the 2020 Euro­pean Cham­pi­onship. Wem­b­ley Sta­dium will host the semi­fi­nals and fi­nal of the tour­na­ment.

“It would have been nice if he’d have turned up but he ob­vi­ously had more, much busier things on,” Al­lardyce said in the record­ing.

FA chair­man Greg Clarke, who held talks with Al­lardyce along­side Glenn, said the man­ager’s com­ments left his po­si­tion “un­ten­able.”

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