COMMONS

FA questioned on ability to conduct internal investigations

22 September 2017

Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee questions England footballers and the Football Association on sport governance.

Witnesses

Wednesday 18 October 2017, Grimond Room, Portcullis House

At 2.30pm

  • Eniola Aluko, England Women's Football Player

At 3.30pm

  • Lianne Sanderson, England Women's Football Player

At 4.00pm

  • Martin Glenn, Chief Executive, The Football Association
  • Greg Clarke, Chairman, The Football Association
  • Dan Ashworth, Technical Director, The Football Association
  • Rachel Brace, Human Resources Director, The Football Association

Football Association investigations

In recent months, the Football Association's ability to conduct internal investigations has come under considerable public scrutiny. Earlier this year, questions were raised over the handling of complaints made by Eniola Aluko, the England Women's star who is alleged to have been bullied and harassed by figures in the England camp. Just days ago, the subject of those complaints, England Women's manager Mark Sampson, was fired following different safeguarding allegations at a previous club.

In response to this, the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee takes evidence on how the FA carries out internal investigations, and asks whether the FA has acted adequately when faced with internal complaints. The Committee also considers whether the FA's current governance structures and the attitudes of senior officials enable players to report instances of abuse.

The Committee is to take evidence from England Women's stars, Eniola Aluko and Lianne Sanderson, as well as from FA representatives. The session is part of the Committee's inquiry into sports governance.

Chair's comment

Chair of the Committee, Damian Collins MP, said:

"Following the sacking of the England Women's coach, Mark Sampson, the Football Association must explain why it took so long to look into issues raised about the coach's past. Why was he appointed in the first place? Why didn’t senior officials refer back to this information when a player stepped forward with serious allegations? Players have a reasonable right to expect their concerns will be taken seriously.

The Committee will ask why senior leadership at the FA failed to act without prompting from external organisations. This raises serious questions about their capacity to run internal investigations."

Further information

Image: iStockphoto

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