FA blames new Sven stories on dirty tricks campaign

Front-page headlines yesterday alleged that the £4m-a-year coach had rekindled his affair with former FA secretary Faria Alam. The pair were said to have spent hours having intimate phone calls while he spent time in the United States in May for his team's friendly matches.

While his bosses last night were endorsing his future as England manager, the reprieve may be short-lived. Ms Alam is expected to reveal more about their relationship over the coming weeks.

Eriksson's flings have already heaped embarrassment on the FA, and the latest allegations ended a disastrous week for the England coach, which started with a 4-1 drubbing by Denmark in a friendly in Copenhagen.

Eriksson called it the team's worst performance of his four-year reign as manager.

In a fortnight, Ms Alam, who is reckoned to have earned around £750,000 in media deals last year, will find out if her tribunal claim for unfair dismissal against the FA has been successful.

The 39-year-old left her position as secretary last summer after it emerged that she had also had an affair with the FA's chief executive, Mark Palios.

Eriksson's long-term partner, Nancy Dell'Olio, who is trying to carve out a media career, will also be furious about further prying into their relationship.

She has already had to put up with her partner's affair with the television presenter Ulrika Jonsson, who once revealed that the England manager wore stack-heeled shoes which he left outside the bedroom. Now Ms Dell'Olio is said to be planning to exact revenge by publishing her own diaries.

Eriksson's camp was trying to counter the latest claims last night by saying - via friends - that he was "miffed" at the suggestions that the affair had been revived.

The version he has told his associates is that he spoke to Ms Alam just once while in New York, but she made the call. And contrary to tabloid reports ("Sven's rat it again with Faria," said one headline), he made it clear he was not interested.

The tribunal hearings earlier this year became a media circus as the inner workings of the Football Association were exposed.

Ms Alam claimed a third senior FA executive, David Davies, had made a series of "unwanted physical overtures", something Mr Davies has vigorously denied.

A friend of Ms Alam was keen to point out last night that she is motivated by a sense of justice rather than any financial reward.

"Had she sold her story about David Davies she would have made £150,000. She wanted justice. She is a very honest person.

"Sven is still very fond of her. They talk every so often. He is a ladies' man, through and through. After the tribunal she has got a bit more to say," said the friend.

Sources within the FA believe the new allegations are part of a wider campaign to bring down Eriksson.

England are well positioned to qualify from their group for next summer's World Cup in Germany, but last Wednesday's defeat - England's worst since 1980 - led some former England internationals to call for Eriksson's scalp.

Brian Barwick, the FA's chief executive, gave his continued backing to the coach: "I expect him to be with us until the European Championship of 2008.

"He enjoys the job and we enjoy having him. There is a bigger picture; we are not naive, but we are dealing with having Sven on board for some time to come."

Reports of Eriksson's relationship with Ms Alam first emerged in July last year and were initially denied. But emails between the two, proving the affair, were leaked and the relationship with Mr Palios then emerged.

Ms Alam sold her story to the News of the World and The Mail on Sunday, as well as sobbing her way through an interview with Trevor McDonald for ITV1's Tonight programme.

She has claimed damages of £30,000 for constructive dismissal and sexual discrimination from the Football Association. The judgment is due in two weeks.

ERIKSSON'S UPS AND DOWNS

UP: 1966. At the age of16 Sven Goran Eriksson won a trophy with Swedish football club Torsby FC, his only prize as a player.

DOWN: 1975. A knee injury while with Swedish second division team Karlskoga forced Eriksson to quit professional football.

UP: 2001. Became first foreign manager of England, following success at Italian club Lazio. A 5-1 win against Germany while qualifying for the World Cup silenced his critics.

DOWN: 2003. Affair with Ulrika Jonsson revealed in the press. The television presenter claimed Eriksson used the FA to book hotel rooms for their liaisons, and that he wished to escape his long-term partner, Nancy Dell'Olio, who was "sapping" his energy.

UP: 2004. Takes England to European Championships in one of the most dramatic campaigns in the side's history. England qualified without losing a game.

DOWN: 2004. Affair with the former fashion model and FA secretary Faria Alam revealed. The FA claimed the relationship was "extremely brief".

UP: 2005. Eriksson reportedly planned marriage and children with Nancy Dell'Olio.

DOWN: 2005. England suffer humiliating 4-1 defeat in a friendly against Denmark. Allegations that Eriksson is still in regular telephone contact with Faria Alam surface in the press.

Tom Anderson

Sport
sportWWE latest including Sting vs Triple H, Brock Lesnar vs Roman Reigns and The Undertaker vs Bray Wyatt
Arts and Entertainment
Louis Theroux: By Reason of Insanity takes him behind the bars again
tvBy Reason of Insanity, TV review
Arts and Entertainment
Cassetteboy's latest video is called Emperor's New Clothes rap
videoThe political parody genius duo strike again with new video
Arts and Entertainment
tvPoldark, TV review
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor
How to make your own Easter egg: Willie Harcourt-Cooze shares his chocolate recipes

How to make your own Easter egg

Willie Harcourt-Cooze talks about his love affair with 'cacao' - and creates an Easter egg especially for The Independent on Sunday
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef declares barbecue season open with his twist on a tradtional Easter Sunday lamb lunch

Bill Granger's twist on Easter Sunday lunch

Next weekend, our chef plans to return to his Aussie roots by firing up the barbecue
Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

Joe Marler: 'It's the way I think the game should be played'

The England prop relives the highs and lows of last Saturday's remarkable afternoon of Six Nations rugby
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?

Cricket World Cup 2015

Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
The Last Word: Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Justin Gatlin knows the price of everything, the value of nothing