English Premiership

Former FA chiefs hit out at governing body

2016-12-12 15:59
Greg Dyke (AFP)

London - Five former English Football Association bosses have hit out at the governing body and urged the British government to reform an "out of balance" organisation filled with "elderly white men".

David Bernstein, David Davies, Greg Dyke, Alex Horne and David Triesman grouped together to write to Damian Collins, chairman of the Culture, Media and Sport Committee.

They say the "well-meaning individuals" in charge of the FA are "collectively unrepresentative of English society" and "under-qualified" to deal with modern football.

The group also called for legislation to be passed, blaming the FA's "inability to reform and modernise in a fast-changing world".

The letter said the FA lacks independence and makes decisions based on vested interests due to a lack of checks and balances.

It also said the FA was resistant to change and that parliament needs to step in.

The letter concluded: "Football is a much-loved sport enjoyed by millions, and it has genuine cultural significance in the country which first codified what is now a global sport.

"A focused intervention can undoubtedly build on these attributes, as has been recognised in many past inquiries and reports. It would give millions of players and fans confidence they will no longer be marginal to the future of their sport.

"It may well move us to redressing the woeful lack of English players or managers and the embarrassing failures of our national team for the past 50 years."

Responding to the letter, Collins wrote: "The select committee shares your concern that the current structure of the FA makes it impossible for it to reform itself.

"As such, there is currently no effective governing body for football in England that is capable of responding to the challenges that face the modern game."

Collins said the committee is working to prepare a draft Bill which would reform the structure of the FA.

He also said the committee would ask for a debate in the House of Commons calling for a vote of no confidence in the FA.

"We cannot afford to wait any longer," he said.

A statement from the FA in response to the letter to Collins read: "The FA is currently working on governance reforms to adhere to Sport England and UK Sport's Governance Code for Sport which was released in October this year.

However, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger said football must be allowed to get its own house in order without government interference because sport and politics should not mix.

"Football and politics should not deal together. Football is a very special activity that should be ruled by football people," he said.

"Our target is to be adult enough to rule our own activity."

Pressed on whether the government should step in to address the failure of the England national team and the current sexual abuse scandal, Wenger said: "No, no, because when you look at the history of sport being linked with politics, it was not always for the benefit of sport.

"I don't know what their frustration is. What we want is that the values of our sport are respected.

"I don't see that football is in a crisis in this country."

Read more on:    english fa  |  soccer
NEXT ON SPORT24X

What To Read Next

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures
Saturday, 29 September 2018
West Ham United v Manchester United, London Stadium 13:30
Arsenal v Watford, Emirates Stadium 16:00
Manchester City v Brighton & Hove Albion, Etihad Stadium 16:00
Everton v Fulham, Goodison Park 16:00
Wolverhampton Wanderers v Southampton, Molineux Stadium 16:00
Newcastle United v Leicester City, St. James' Park 16:00
Huddersfield Town v Tottenham Hotspur, The John Smith's Stadium 16:00
Chelsea v Liverpool, Stamford Bridge 18:30
Sunday, 30 September 2018
Cardiff City v Burnley, Cardiff City Stadium 17:00
Monday, 01 October 2018
AFC Bournemouth v Crystal Palace, Vitality Stadium 21:00
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Who will claim the Premier League title at the end of the 2018/19 season?

 
 
Men
Women
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter

Featured

The 2018/19 Absa Premiership season is in full swing. Will Mamelodi Sundowns retain their title? Or can one of Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates, Wits, SuperSport United - or another team perhaps - snatch glory from the Brazilians? Be sure to visit Sport24 for all the latest news!

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.