FA to quiz David Moyes as he says sorry for his ‘slap’ threat to BBC woman
The manager yesterday came under fire for his comments last month when his struggling side drew 0-0 with Burnley.
The married father-of-one took exception to a question from BBC reporter Vicki Sparks during an interview for Match of the Day and warned her she “might get a slap, even though you’re a woman”.
He apologised, insisting “it’s not my character” – but refused to qui
FA bosses yesterday said they will seek an explanation from Moyes, 53, following demands for an investigation into the “sexist threats”.
Moyes phoned the reporter days after the incident to apologise.
He told a press conference yesterday: “In the heat of the moment, I made a mistake in my comment to a BBC reporter which I profoundly regret.
“I was disappointed with myself for it. I subsequently phoned the reporter and apologised, which she accepted.“It’s not my character, it’s not my type, as most people know. I think people who know me would say what I’m about. In the heat of the moment, I used the wrong words.”
He does not believe he will be sacked over the comments and when asked if he had thought about resigning he said: “No, never a consideration.”
The Scot added: “I want to do the job and I want to get it right. There’s been a lot of difficulties but I want to be here.”
The former Manchester United and Everton boss claimed he was “one of the biggest” campaigners for women’s football.
Moyes threatened Ms Sparks after she asked if he was under more pressure because club chairman Ellis Short was in the stands for the crucial match against Burnley on March 18, which left Sunderland adrift in the Premier League relegation places.
Moyes phoned the reporter days after the incident to apologise
He said “no” during the interview but once the cameras were switched off, he turned on the reporter, adding: “It was getting a wee bit naughty at the end there, so just watch yourself. You still might get a slap, even though you’re a woman. Careful the next time you come in.”
Ms Sparks and Moyes can be heard laughing during the exchange, which was caught on a mobile phone camera.
One of her colleagues criticised the comments, saying: “This is disgraceful bullying and sexism ending with a chilling warning.”
Ms Sparks did not complain to the club.
An FA spokesman said yesterday: “We are seeking observations from the club.”
But shadow sports minister Dr Rosena Allin-Khan said football’s governing body “must take action immediately”.
Moyes threatened Ms Sparks after she asked if he was under more pressure as Ellis Short was there
She added: “This is disgraceful. David Moyes cannot get away with these sexist threats.”
Clare Phillipson, director of the domestic abuse charity Wearside Women in Need, said she was “stunned” when she watched video footage of the exchange.
She said: “I think the FA have to look into it.”
Match of the Day presenter Gary Lineker also condemned the comments, tweeting: “Moyes incident highlights a tendency for some managers to treat interviewers with utter disdain. Pressured job. Well rewarded. Inexcusable.”
A Sunderland spokesman said the matter “was resolved amicably”.
A BBC spokesman said: “Mr Moyes has apologised to our reporter and she has accepted his apology.” Sunderland, who lost 1-0 at Watford on Saturday, are bottom of the Premier League.