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‘Greg Clarke’s only option was to resign’

Greg Clarke used the word “coloured” among a series of offensive remarks when speaking to MPs on Tuesday.

Gareth Southgate has condemned former Football Association chairman Greg Clarke’s unacceptable comments and believes “there was no alternative but for him to go”. The governing body was sent into a tailspin on Tuesday when the 63-year-old used the word “coloured” among a series of offensive remarks when speaking to MPs on the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport committee. Clarke resigned that evening and England manager Southgate says that was the only option for him to take.

“Well, I think, as he said himself, the terminology he used in a number of areas was not acceptable and doesn’t reflect the view of the FA, doesn’t reflect what we as a team stand for,” Southgate said.

“I don’t think he had any alternative but to take the decision he did to resign.

“I have to caveat that a little bit. I think (with) Greg, what’s a shame for him in particular is that he’s done a lot of work behind the scenes to support the diversity code, to make a lot of inroads into relationships around Europe.

“When we had the incidents in Montenegro and Bulgaria, he was at the forefront of supporting the players and lobbying with UEFA for change.

“Unfortunately, of course, he’s going to be remembered for the comments he’s made.

“There is a balance to that because I don’t like to see individuals suffer as publicly as he has but, I repeat, what he said wasn’t acceptable and there was no alternative but for him to go.”

The FA is hoping to appoint a new chairman by the end of March 2021 and Southgate wants the right person for the job.

Paul Elliott, the chairman of the FA’s inclusion advisory board, has been reported as…

Simon Peach, Chief Football Writer

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