Greg Clarke resigns as English soccer head after racist remarks

APOLOGETIC Chairman of The English Football Association Greg Clarke

The 63-year-old, who is a vice-president of world governing body Federation Internationale de Football Association, also attracted criticism for suggesting the lack of professional players in England from a South Asian background was due to "different career interests", comparing the situation to the IT department at the FA.

"Greg Clarke is deeply apologetic for the language he used to reference members of the ethnic minority community during the select committee hearing today", said the spokesperson.

Clarke appeared to pander to a series of racist and sexist stereotypes and also insinuated that being gay was a "life choice" - although it is unclear whether he was referring to the decision to "come out".

Follow all the latest updates on our LIVE news blog below... 'If you go to the IT department at the FA, there's a lot more South Asians than there are Afro-Caribbeans.

The goal of the FA chief appearing before the committee had been to discuss the governance of the game, particularly related to the financial rescue package from the Premier League to the EFL and also the recent revelations of his involvement in Project Big Picture discussions.

Anton Ferdinand, who was at the centre of a racism storm during his career when he suffered abuse from former England and Chelsea captain John Terry, said Clarke's reference was "unacceptable".

He referred to back players as "colored footballers" which caused outrage both among the MPs he was talking with and the wider community watching on TV in disbelief.

"My unacceptable words in front of parliament were a disservice to our game and to those who watch, play, referee and administer it", Clarke said.

Clarke came under further scrutiny for the wording of comments regarding attracting more individuals from different backgrounds to work in football.

The equality charity Kick It Out said his remark about black players should be "consigned to the dustbin of history" and criticised the comments by Clarke concerning people from South Asia, gay players and female footballers. This has crystallised my resolve to move on.

I am a product of having worked overseas, in the US for many years, where I was required to use the term "people of colour".

"2020 has been a challenging year and I have been actively considering standing down for some time to make way for a new Chair now our CEO transition is complete and excellent executive leadership under Mark Bullingham is established. Sometimes I trip over my words and I deeply apologise".

On the same call, he perpetuated a racial stereotype about Asian people.

"The casual sexism of saying "girls" do not like balls hit at them hard, is staggering from anyone, let alone the leader of our national game". "They have different career interests".

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