FA Chief: Sam Allardyce 'let us down badly'

New FA chairman Greg Clarke also insisted that proper due diligence had been gone through with regard to previous allegations against former England manager Sam Allardyce

Tom Peck
Monday 17 October 2016 14:44 BST
New FA chairman Greg Clarke took up his role in August, and was not involved in the Allardyce appointment
New FA chairman Greg Clarke took up his role in August, and was not involved in the Allardyce appointment (Getty)

New FA chairman Greg Clarke said Sam Allardyce had ‘let us down badly’ when asked by MPs about the decision to remove the former England manager from his post.

'I think a national manager to be the national manager,” Mr Clarke, who is the former chairman of Premier Leage chapmions Leicester City told the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee.

'I think that he let us down badly because, in the end, we want a manager whose sole priority is winning for the England team.'

The FA chief faced two hours of questions by MPs, who wanted to know why existing allegations against Mr Allardyce, including those made in a BBC Panorama expose ten years ago, had not been sufficient to prevent him getting the job, and also why Mr Allardyce had departed with a sizeable payoff.

'It is questionable that he should have been countenancing such activity in addition to his job as national manager,' Clarke said.

Clarke only came to his post in August, after Allardyce’s appointment, but he insisted due diligence had been applie: 'My understanding from informal conversations with board members (is) significant enquiries were made of the clubs in the Premier League that Sam Allardyce had been manager of,” he said.

“Also, he was a board member at the LMA (League Managers' Association) and enquiries were made there.

'No significant issues emerged as of those enquiries.”

At the heart of the question is whether or not, in the meetings with undercover Telegraph journalists posing as businessmen, Mr Allardyce offered assist them in getting round third party player ownership rules. Mr Clarke said that the Daily Telegraph were still refusing to give full transcripts of the meeting to the FA, so they only know ‘what he said’, not ‘the question he was asked.’

Clarke told Ian Lucas MP that when he asked Allardyce about it, he had ‘a limited recollection’ of what had happened.’

“'Most of the questions I asked, he (Allardyce) responded with 'I can't remember,” Clarke said. 'I genuinely think that Mr Allardyce's recollection of both of those meetings was fairly limited.'

He said the two parties had mutally agreed to end Allardyce’s employment, and that a financial settlement had been reached, the amount of which is ‘subject to a confidentiality agreement.’

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