FA has 'plan in place' to resolve Mary Earps replica shirt issue as petition nears 42,000

There is a "plan in place" to resolve the issue surrounding Mary Earps goalkeeping shirt, says FA boss Mark Bullingham.

England kit provider Nike has come under fire after the sportswear giant chose not to sell replica shirts adorned with the England goalkeeper's name and number.

Since then, 16-year-old Emmy Somauroo has set up a petition calling on the sports brand to start selling the shirt, gaining almost 42,000 signatures in the process.

And, as the Lionesses head into the World Cup Final against Spain, Bullingham has said there is "a plan in place to resolve the issue."

Speaking to ITV News Sports Editor Steve Scott, Bullingham said: "We are trying to do something about that and we will get to that issue after the tournament. We do have a plan to resolve that.

"I will say that Nike have been a great partner in supporting us in everyway out here and we can see how we have a tremendous opportunity to grow women's goalkeeping and I'm sure they will be a part of that going forwards."

Steve Scott asked FA boss Mark Bullingham 'how have Nike explained why they haven't sold it so far'

He said: "Well there is a detailed discussion that we have had with them that we won't go into here, but the key thing is that we have a plan to resolve it going forwards and we will be doing that."

Emmy, from Desborough in Northamptonshire, said: "I want to show Mary the demand and appreciation that we have for her and all female goalkeepers."

She said she had been left "shocked and upset" that fans would not be able to show their support by buying the shirt.

Football finance expert Kieran Maguire, previously speaking to ITV News, says the decision not to produce the shirt could be a costly one for Nike - especially in terms of its reputation.

“As far as Nike is concerned, it's not worth their while putting on [low-volume production runs]," he explained. "But from a public relations point of view, it's absolutely appalling.”

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