Sam Allardyce’s reign as the England manager has ended after 67 days following allegations he had offered advice on how to bypass the FA’s rules on player transfers.
Allardyce has left his position by mutual consent after two months and jusy one game, a World Cup qualifying victory over Slovakia. He and his agent, Mark Curtis, attended a meeting with the FA’s chairman, Greg Clarke, and the chief executive, Martin Glenn, at Wembley stadium on Tuesday in the wake of the comments filmed by undercover reporters from the Daily Telegraph.
Allardyce today confirmed he had offered a “sincere and wholehearted apology for my actions” before his departure.
An FA statement read: “The FA can confirm Sam Allardyce has left his position as England manager. Allardyce’s conduct, as reported today, was inappropriate of the England manager. He accepts he made a significant error of judgment and has apologised. However, due to the serious nature of his actions, the FA and Allardyce have mutually agreed to terminate his contract with immediate effect.
“This is not a decision that was taken lightly but the FA’s priority is to protect the wider interests of the game and maintain the highest standards of conduct in football. The manager of the England men’s senior team is a position which must demonstrate strong leadership and show respect for the integrity of the game at all times.
“Gareth Southgate will take charge of the men’s senior team for the next four matches against Malta, Slovenia, Scotland and Spain while the FA begins its search for the new England manager. The FA wishes Sam well in the future.”
Allardyce, who succeeded Roy Hodgson in July, had been filmed appearing to offer advice to the reporters on how to circumvent the FA’s rules on player transfers.
It was his remarks on third-party ownership, and whether he was offering advice on bypassing “ridiculous” FA and Fifa rules, which have caused consternation. He is filmed telling the undercover reporters it was “not a problem” to get around FA rules imposed in 2008 that prevent parties “owning” players’ economic rights. The practice has seen been outlawed globally by world governing body Fifa.
Allardyce released a statement on Tuesday night which read: “Further to recent events, The FA and I have mutually agreed to part company. It was a great honour for me to be appointed back in July and I am deeply disappointed at this outcome.
“This afternoon, I met with Greg Clarke and Martin Glenn and offered a sincere and wholehearted apology for my actions.
“Although it was made clear during the recorded conversations that any proposed arrangements would need The FA’s full approval, I recognise I made some comments which have caused embarrassment.
“As part of today’s meeting, I was asked to clarify what I said and the context in which the conversations took place. I have co-operated fully in this regard. I also regret my comments with regard to other individuals.”
Allardyce was on a slary of around £3m-a-year, plus bonuses. In teh meeting with the undercover reporters he appeared to be using his position to negotiate a £400,000 deal to address (bogus) investors in a south-east Asia firm.