Richard Scudamore emails: Premier League chief executive will face 'no further action' over sexist emails

Scudamore's PA had leaked the emails from his personal account

The Premier League delivered a defiant message of support to their chief executive Richard Scudamore today, deciding that he will face no further disciplinary action over his sexist email scandal.

The league gave Scudamore, 54, unprecedented backing over the saga which has seen him under greater pressure than at any other time in his 15 years in charge of the organisation – a move that will dismay the many enemies of the so-called most powerful man in English football.  The clubs’ statement cited Scudamore’s “previously unblemished” record, and the testimony of women working at the Premier League, in support of their chief executive.

The investigation into Scudamore was carried out by Peter McCormick, the acting Premier League chairman, and the only other member of the league’s board – a corporate structure which has attracted criticism. McCormick said in his statement on behalf of the clubs that he had used external legal help, a London law firm, to examine all Scudamore’s email correspondence and found “no evidence of wider discriminatory attitudes or inappropriate language or a general attitude of disrespect to women”.

The decision was endorsed unanimously by representatives of the 17 surviving Premier League clubs - the shares to the three newly–promoted clubs, one still to be determined, have not yet been handed over. Among that number were two women, Sunderland chief executive Margaret Byrne and West Ham vice-chairman Karren Brady.

Read more: Everyday misogyny rife in football is rarely deemed worthy of mention

In a personal statement, Scudamore said: “Entering into email exchanges of this nature was wrong and the apology I have made is sincere, as is the contrition I feel. These exchanges do not reflect my views towards women in football, the workplace or in general. It is something that will never be repeated.”

McCormick read out his recommendations at the meeting with Scudamore present. The chief executive then made himself available for questions before leaving the meeting while the matter was discussed and then voted upon.

The key points of McCormick’s statement on behalf of the club was that the temporary personal assistant, Rani Abraham, who gave the Scudamore emails to the Sunday Mirror, had searched them out, unauthorised, from a personal email account. The exchange with television rights lawyer Nick West was described as “private communications between friends of long-standing”.

The clubs found that the woman referred to in the emails as “Edna”, Peta Bistany, the league’s planning and projects’ director, was not offended by their content. They also satisfied themselves that there was “no climate of disrespect of women in the workplace” at the Premier League adding that “female staff with direct experience of working with or close to the chief executive have made it very clear that his conduct and behaviour have been beyond reproach.”

In his separate statement, Scudamore said that he would seek meetings with stake holders of the game to reassure them of his views towards women. He said he would do so to “seek their views and to reassure them that I will continue to do my utmost personally, and through all the Premier League’s means to help promote diversity and inclusion, develop the women’s game and support women who want be involved in football at any level.”

He added: “I am grateful for the support I have received throughout this from family, friends and colleagues, but especially the women who work with me at the Premier League.”

Earlier in the day, the Prime Minister David Cameron had suggested that Scudamore should be sacked for his comments about women in the emails to West, saying that if it was one of his staff they would not survive in their job. He added that he had not seen the content of the emails in question.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Alan Bennett criticised the lack of fairness in British society encapsulated by the private school system
peopleBut he does like Stewart Lee
Sport
John Terry, Frank Lampard
footballChelsea captain sends signed shirt to fan whose mum had died
Life and Style
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Rita Ora will replace Kylie Minogue as a judge on The Voice 2015
tv
Life and Style
tech
Life and Style
Alan Turing, who was convicted of gross indecency in 1952, was granted a royal pardon last year
life
Arts and Entertainment
Sheridan Smith as Cilla Black and Ed Stoppard as her manager Brian Epstein
tvCilla Episode 2 review: Grit under the glamour in part two of biopic series starring Sheridan Smith
Life and Style
life
Arts and Entertainment
Tennis player Andy Murray's mum Judy has been paired with Anton du Beke for Strictly Come Dancing. 'I'm absolutely delighted,' she said.
tvJudy Murray 'struggling' to let Anton Du Beke take control on Strictly
Life and Style
Vote with your wallet: the app can help shoppers feel more informed about items on sale
lifeNew app reveals political leanings of food companies
Sport
David Moyes and Louis van Gaal
football
Caption competition
Caption competition
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

Secret politics of the weekly shop

The politics of the weekly shop

New app reveals political leanings of food companies
Beam me up, Scottie!

Beam me up, Scottie!

Celebrity Trekkies from Alex Salmond to Barack Obama
Beware Wet Paint: The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition

Beware Wet Paint

The ICA's latest ambitious exhibition
Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Pink Floyd have produced some of rock's greatest ever album covers

Can 'The Endless River' carry on the tradition?
Sanctuary for the suicidal

Sanctuary for the suicidal

One mother's story of how London charity Maytree helped her son with his depression
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits