Live updates

Redknapp defends Mackay: 'He is not a paedophile'

QPR manager Harry Redknapp offered a bizarre defence of under-fire former Cardiff manager Malky Mackay, saying: "He hasn't murdered anyone, he hasn't raped anyone and he is not a paedophile."

Mackay and his former head of recruitment Iain Moody are alleged to have shared racist, sexist and homophobic texts when they worked together at the Welsh club.

I don't know the other lad (Moody) but what they have done is not right. Malky is a great lad, a family man and a real football man, he has made mistakes and people make mistakes in life.

Suddenly everyone is an angel, he made a big mistake the lad but it shouldn't finish his life. He is a good manager and I feel bad for what he has done but I bet no one is feeling as bad as him or his family today.

I'm not condoning what he has done but show me someone who has never made a mistake and I will show you a liar. He hasn't murdered anyone, he hasn't raped anyone and he is not a paedophile.

– Harry Redknapp
Wales

It's not 'banter' - it's offensive, says Cardiff City

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".

Malky
Rio Ferdinand is one of many to question the LMA's response. Credit: PA

A highly placed source at Cardiff City told ITV News that they are "extremely disappointed with the League Managers' Association statement, belittling highly offensive comments as banter."

Earlier today England star Rio Ferdinand tweeted to ask "Who wrote the #LMA statement???"

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.

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.

– League Managers Association

Advertisement

LMA apology for 'some wording' in 'banter' statement

The League Managers Association has apologised for a statement yesterday which defended offensive text messages sent by Malky Mackay as "friendly banter."

A new statement issued this morning said:

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.

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 LMA will not be commenting further on the allegations relating to Malky Mackay whilst The FA conducts its investigation, other than to repeat that both the LMA and Malky will be cooperating 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.

– LMA

LMA's Mackay statement 'accepts racism as banter'

Stan Collymore has worked in broadcasting since his playing career ended.
Stan Collymore has worked in broadcasting since his playing career ended. Credit: PA

Former England striker Stan Collymore has described the League Managers' Association's statement which says Malky Mackay's offensive text messages were part of some "friendly banter" as being "f****** disgraceful".

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.

Collymore tweeted: "LMA statement. F*****g disgraceful. Institutional acceptance of the "banter" of casual racism.

Rio Ferdinand questions LMA 'friendly banter' statement

Former Manchester United and England captain Rio Ferdinand has questioned a managers' union statement which defended offensive text messages allegedly sent by Malky Mackay as "friendly text message banter."

The former Cardiff City manager and ex-head of recruitment Iain Moody had been accused of sending "sexist, racist and homophobic" text messages during their time at Cardiff.

But a statement on behalf of Malky Mackay issued by the League Managers' Association has since been criticised by a number of parties including an anti-racism group.

Gazza's daughter thanks fans for support after setback

Paul Gascoigne's daughter has thanked fans who offered sympathy after shocking photographs showed him looking gaunt and frail as he was helped into an ambulance.

The ex-England footballer, now 47, has a long history of problems with alcohol and was reportedly found slumped outside his home.

Bianca Gascoigne, 27, received messaged of support from fans who remember him fondly from his time at clubs including Newcastle, Tottenham and Rangers.

John Rae's tweet was one of the ones she retweeted:

Bianca, a model and reality TV star, wrote herself:

Earlier this week it was reported that Gascoigne could return to football after signing for a Sunday league club in Bournemouth.

Advertisement

Malky Mackay messages were 'friendly text banter'

Malky Mackay has admitted sending text messages that were "disrespectful of other cultures", but said they were "part of friendly banter".

The Scot and Iain Moody are alleged to have shared racist, sexist and homophobic text messages in claims sent by the pair's former club Cardiff City to the FA.

PA Wire
Malky Mackay has apologised but said the texts were part of 'friendly banter'. Credit: PA Wire

The League Managers' Association issued a statement on Mackay's behalf saying: ''If Malky has caused any offence by these two isolated matters he would wish to sincerely apologise.''

The statement admitted two messages Mackay sent were "disrespectful of other cultures''.

''These were...sent in private at a time Malky felt under great pressure and when he was letting off steam to a friend during some friendly text message banter," it added.

Lib Dems: Safe standing offers fans better atmosphere

The introduction of safe standing at football grounds would guarantee fans a "better atmosphere and cheaper tickets", the Liberal Democrats have said.

Party spokesman John Leech MP told BBC Sport standing areas have proved successful at grounds across Europe and could have beneficial effects for supporters in Britain.

Safe standing is allowed in many other sports and we do not believe that the top level of football should be an exception.

Safe standing offers supporters more choice, a better atmosphere and cheaper tickets.

It is an idea whose time has come and I am proud that it is the Liberal Democrats who are the first political party to commit to delivering this.

– John Leech

Lib Dems pledge to allow safe standing at matches

The Liberal Democrats will allow Premier League and Championship clubs to introduce safe standing at stadiums, under plans in its 2015 general election manifesto.

In the wake of the Hillsborough disaster in 1989, clubs in England's top two divisions were required to ensure all fans were seated at matches.

Football Supporters' Federation
Rail seats at Bristol City's Ashton Gate stadium, which are only allowed to be used at Bristol Rugby matches. Credit: Football Supporters' Federation

The party says rail seats, which can be locked in an upright position to allow fans to stand and lean against a barrier, should be considered in English football, following examples in leagues across Europe.

It insists it is not campaigning for a return to open terracing.

The Football Supporters' Federation has long campaigned for the introduction of safe standing, claiming it improves the atmosphere at games and cuts ticket prices.

FA confirms investigation into alleged offensive texts

The Football Association has confirmed it is investigating a dossier of alleged racist, sexist and homophobic text messages sent by football manager Malky Mackay.

Mackay is accused of exchanging the texts with Iain Moody when they were both at Cardiff City.

ITV News sports correspondent Ian Payne reports.

Read: Moody resigns from Crystal Palace after 'racist texts' claims

Load more updates

Advertisement

Today's top stories