LMA sorry about Mackay statement

Former Cardiff manager Malky Mackay is facing allegations of misconduct

Former Cardiff manager Malky Mackay is facing allegations of misconduct

First published in National Sport News © by

The League Managers Association has apologised for the statement it released yesterday regarding Malky Mackay, saying some of the wording "was inappropriate and has been perceived to trivialise matters of a racist, sexist or homophobic nature".

The LMA released a statement on behalf of former Cardiff manager Mackay on Thursday night after the 42-year-old Scot and Iain Moody were alleged to have shared racist, sexist and homophobic texts when they worked together at the Welsh club.

The initial statement said Mackay had been under pressure at the time of the messages and that he was ''letting off steam to a friend during some friendly text message banter".

That statement has been widely criticised by anti-discrimination campaigners within the game, and the LMA today felt compelled to apologise for how the first release had been worded.

"The LMA apologises for some of its wording, in its release yesterday, which was inappropriate and has been perceived to trivialise matters of a racist, sexist or homophobic nature. That was certainly not our intention," the statement read.

"It is beyond argument that any comments that are discriminatory, even used in private, are totally unacceptable. The LMA remains absolutely aware of our responsibility to the game and to promote and uphold the highest standards of behaviour."

The new LMA statement concluded: "The LMA will not be commenting further on the allegations relating to Malky Mackay whilst the Football Association conducts its investigation, other than to repeat that both the LMA and Malky will be co-operating fully.

"We will continue to work with all of the game's stakeholders to address the important issues of respect and discriminatory behaviour in all its forms."

Cardiff were also upset with the initial statement by the LMA, Press Association Sport understands.

Current Cardiff manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, meanwhile, says he has not encountered any form of racism during his time in football.

Solskjaer, speaking at his press conference ahead of tomorrow's Sky Bet Championship game at Wolves, refused to comment on the specifics of the Mackay case.

But Solskjaer said: "From my experience I had no problem in my dressing rooms at Man United or Molde.

"We all have opinions and I think people know my stand on it.

"I will discuss mine in due time but I know if I say what happens, if I say something, it will create headlines.

"I don't want to say anything to take my focus away from the players."

Troy Townsend, the education and development manager for the anti-discrimination campaign group Kick It Out, said regarding the LMA's new statement: "I wish this was the statement they had prepared yesterday.

"Does today undo the damage from yesterday? I don't think it does. It is welcome but yesterday will stick in people's minds. I wish (the LMA) had taken a step back and said 'this would have been more appropriate' in the first place."

QPR manager Harry Redknapp has defended Mackay, admitting he made a mistake but that the matter "should not finish (Mackay's) life". Redknapp added: "He hasn't murdered anyone, he hasn't raped anyone and he is not a paedophile."

Townsend was dismayed by Redknapp's comments and told Press Association Sport: "What he has said has no benefit at all. I don't know what is in Harry's head when he's saying that.

"(Mackay's alleged comments) have anti-Semitic and racial connotations and at the end of the day it's affecting a group of people and we should be more respectful of those people.

"What Harry has said shows a lack of understanding about the situation. These are really sensitive issues and you have to respect the reasons behind them. He's almost saying 'it ain't that bad is it?', but unfortunately for some people, it is."

Former England striker Stan Collymore described the LMA's first statement as being ''f****** disgraceful''.

He said on Twitter: ''LMA statement. F****** disgraceful. Institutional acceptance of the 'banter' of casual racism.''

He does feel Mackay deserves a second chance, though, adding: ''Always kind to me, hope he says sorry (if true) and moves on.''

Another former player who has worked closely on eliminating discrimination, Jason Roberts, tweeted excerpts from the LMA's initial statement and then said: ''That's it..I'm done for the evening..The LMA said it better than I ever could.. They are actually being serious! Somebody drafted that..WOW!''

Moody resigned from his position as sporting director of Palace on Thursday after the allegations surfaced in a Daily Mail article.

Press Association Sport understands Cardiff's sending of the dossier to the FA was not deliberately timed to have any effect on Mackay's candidacy for the Palace job.

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