"They have different career interests."
The Football Association’s (FA) chairman, Greg Clarke, resigned after making racial and sexist comments towards the BAME community.
Greg Clarke had used terms such as “coloured” to refer to footballers from different ethnic backgrounds. He had specifically stereotyped those within the South Asian and African-Caribbean community.
When discussing the topic of diversity, Greg Clarke said:
“If you go to the IT department at the FA, there’s a lot more South Asians than there are Afro-Caribbeans.
“They have different career interests.”
This did not sit well with the BAME community.
To make matters worse, he referred to homosexuality as “a life choice” and was criticised for saying a female coach had informed him that the lack of women goalkeepers is because women do not like footballs kicked at them with power.
Despite some fans arguing that the comments made were not detrimental and intentionally offensive, Kick It Out and others completely disagree.
Our response to comments made today by Greg Clarke at the DCMS Select Committee ?? pic.twitter.com/uZ7Iep4PMt
— Kick It Out (@kickitout) November 10, 2020
The FA has had its fair share of battles with racism. A man of Greg Clarke’s position should by no means add to it.
This is why individuals such as Julian Knight MP, Chairman of the DCMS select committee, had questioned whether Greg Clarke was suitable to lead the FA.
He said: “Is someone like Mr Clarke who uses such unfortunate phrases and has used unfortunate phrases in the past and has shown to flounder over some of these issues, whether or not he really is the right person to carry the FA forwards”
Knight stated that he believes in genuine apologies and moving forward but the continuous comments made by Clarke were “unacceptable”.
Clarke took full responsibility for the matter and admitted that his comments were “unacceptable”. He continued his understanding of the issue by stating:
“I am deeply saddened that I have offended those diverse communities in football that I and others worked so hard to include.”
He also tried to justify his actions by explaining how he works in countries like the USA where phrases such as “coloured” and “people of colour” are prefered.
Regardless, the FA have stood behind there decision and stated:
“We can confirm that Greg Clarke has stepped down from his role as our chairman.
“Peter McCormick will step into the role as interim FA chairman with immediate effect and the FA Board will begin the process of identifying and appointing a new chair in due course.”