Woman football agent in sex row

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The Independent Online
The only female football agent in England, who was banned from a players' dinner because she was a woman, took her sex discrimination campaign to the House of Lords yesterday.

Rachel Anderson, a Fifa-licensed agent, was refused entry to the "men only" Professional Footballers Association annual award dinner in April. Yesterday, she took her fight to Westminster in an attempt to force an amendment of the Sex Discrimination Act 1975. Her campaign took the form of a petition, known as a "prayer to Parliament", read out to the House of Lords.

Mrs Anderson, who has 27 clients, including Julian Dicks of West Ham, said she felt confident her prayer would convince peers that the act needed amending. "Common sense will prevail, I hope," she said.

Mrs Anderson, 40, was invited to the dinner by Mr Dicks and was furious to be told it was a "men only" affair by Gordon Taylor, chief executive of the Professional Footballers Association.

Her campaign has been backed by Tony Banks, the sports minister, and Graham Kelly, chairman of the Football Association, who both boycotted the dinner.