Premier League chief 'contrite' over sexist emails
English Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore spoke of his "sincere contrition" after it was announced Monday he wouldn't lose his job for sending sexist emails.
Last week Britain's Sunday Mirror newspaper published leaked private emails sent by Scudamore to a lawyer friend which contained crude sexual innuendos.
Since then Scudamore, 54, had faced a torrent of criticism, from both inside and outside football.
But a meeting of Premier League clubs on Monday decided against disciplinary action after being told the emails "did include some inappropriate remarks" but that Scudamore had apologised.
Afterwards Scudamore, who vowed to meet with fellow senior football figure to demonstrate his commitment to the women's game, said: "Entering into email exchanges of this nature was wrong and the apology I have made is sincere, as is the contrition I feel.
"These exchanges do not reflect my views towards women in football, the workplace or in general. It is something that will never be repeated.
"I appreciate that I have a tremendous amount of hard work to do to convince those in the game who do not know me that my leadership and work in the areas of equality and discrimination to date reflect who I am and what I believe."
He added: "So, I will now undertake meetings and discussions with a wide range of stakeholders in the game to hear their views and to reassure them that I will continue to do my utmost personally, and through all the Premier League's means to help promote diversity and inclusion, develop the women's game and support women who want be involved in football at any level."
Scudamore received support Monday from West Ham vice-chairman Karren Brady, who insisted he is "categorically not sexist".
Monday's meeting of 17 Premier League clubs -- it didn't include the three relegated teams -- was called to resolve an issue that otherwise had the potential to rumble on for several more weeks.
- 'Categorically not sexist' -
"Obviously myself and the clubs are disappointed at what they have seen and heard, but no more so than Richard himself," Brady said.
"He has served not only the Premier League, but the wider game over the last 17 years and very few have done more, in my opinion, to open up football, to support women in the game and take the whole anti-discrimination agenda forward.
"I have known Richard for 20 years and he is categorically not sexist."
Meanwhile Sunderland chief executive Margaret Byrne, another of the most senior women in English football, was equally strong in her support of Scudamore.
"I wholeheartedly endorse the decision made today (Monday) and I am delighted that common sense has prevailed," she said.
"Richard made a mistake, for which he apologised both swiftly and unreservedly. All too often, external organisations or individuals try to exert pressure, when they are not privy to facts of cases."
Earlier, Premier League acting chairman Peter McCormick confirmed Scudamore would face no sanction from his employers by saying: "In the light of a previously unblemished record over 15 years of service to the Premier League, the clubs resolved unanimously that no further disciplinary action is required or justified."
In the emails, Scudamore was revealed to have joked about "female irrationality", forwarded a "male fairy tale" about a prince who'd slept with various women, and told his friend to keep a female colleague "off your shaft" in a golf-related exchange.
At the weekend the woman who leaked the emails, Rani Abraham, a former temporary personal assistant to Scudamore, defended her conduct by telling the Sunday Mirror: "Mr Scudamore has a huge amount of influence and is paid a vast sum of money and has behaved wrongly.
"And for those people who've attacked me for saying they were just 'jokes'...how would they feel if those messages were written about their wife or girlfriend or daughter?"