New England Women's boss Phil Neville deletes Twitter account over 'sexist' tweets

Phil Neville's appointment as the new England women's head coach has immediately become embroiled in controversy after sexist tweets allegedly sent by Neville began circulating.

One message, posted from Neville's @fizzer18 account in July 2011, reads: "Relax I’m back chilled – just battered the wife!!! Feel better now!”

Another, sent on December 2012, said: “U women of [sic] always wanted equality until it comes to paying the bills #hypocrites”.

Neville, a former Manchester United and Everton player, has since deleted his Twitter account.

He is reportedly due to address the tweets when he is unveiled to the media for the first time.

Another of the controversial tweets from Neville's account. Credit: Twitter

Neville apologised for his tweets, he said in a statement: “Following comments made a number of years ago I would like to clarify that they were not and are not a true and genuine reflection of either my character or beliefs, and would like to apologise.

"I am fully aware of my responsibilities as the England Women’s Head Coach and am immensely proud and honoured to have been given the role. I am now looking forward to the future and will work tirelessly to try and help bring success to the team.”

There was also criticism of the fact the appointment was announced via the England men's Twitter account as opposed to the designated Lionesses one.

Former Manchester United and Everton defender Neville was a surprise choice for the role as he did not originally apply for the position and has never previously worked in the women's game before.

Neville has signed a three-and-a-half year deal with the Football Association, which will see him through to the end of the 2021 European Championships.

"I am honoured to be given the chance to lead England," said Neville. "With the new coaching team we are putting in place, we can help the players build on their great progress in recent years.

"This squad is on the verge of something special and I believe I can lead them to the next level.

"I can't wait to get out on the training pitch and down to work with an elite group of players at the top of their game."

The FA dismissed the previous manager Mark Sampson for "inappropriate and unacceptable" behaviour with female players during his time as manager at Bristol.