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10th Nov 2020

FA chairman Greg Clarke apologises after using racial slur

Wayne Farry

Clarke was speaking to MPs at the time

The chairman of the Football Association, Greg Clarke, has been forced to apologise after using a racial slur while talking to MPs in a parliamentary committee on Tuesday.

Clarke used the term “coloured footballers” while giving evidence to the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee. On the same call, he perpetuated a racial stereotype about Asian people.

He had been called to speak to MPs regarding Project Big Picture, the highly controversial and much publicised plan by the Premier League’s ‘big six’ to reform the top flight and the football league, before inadvertently drawing attention to himself with a slew of inappropriate comments, including the use of the term “coloured”, an outdated and highly offensive term.

“If I said it I deeply apologise for it, I worked in the USA for many years and was required to use the phrase ‘people of colour’ and I sometimes trip up on my words,” said Clarke after using the racial slur.

Later on, Clarke made yet another racially insensitive and stereotypical comment: “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.”

Just to cap it off, Clarke then spoke of a conversation with a coach in which he was told that young girls “don’t like the ball kicked at them hard”.

Clarke’s ignorant comments have been widely criticised on social media, with former footballer Stan Collymore calling it “flat out racial profiling”.