Sexual abuse in English soccer exposed as victims speak out
LONDON >> Former English soccer players who were subjected to years of sexual abuse by youth team coaches entrusted with their care are breaking cover to expose the game’s dark secrets.
Harrowing stories of assaults on young players by men they relied on to turn them into professionals are forcing authorities and clubs to finally address how child abusers were able to exploit their positions of power and why the behavior wasn’t confronted earlier.
The abuses were first uncovered two decades ago with the conviction of English coach Barry Bennell in the United States and his homeland. Bennell worked in academies across northwest England.
Four police forces across England, including London, have opened investigations after being contacted about Bennell and other unnamed people. Leading clubs Manchester City and Newcastle said they are assisting authorities.