Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Taylor says 'book-plugging' Campbell wrong on England racism

03 March 2014, 20:30

London - Former England manager Graham Taylor said Sol Campbell was giving his biography "a good sell" as he rejected the ex centre-back's claims he was not chosen as national team captain because he was black.

"During my time as England manager I never had any influence from the FA (England's governing Football Association) on who should be England captain regarding a player's race," Taylor told the BBC.

"I gave the captaincy to Paul Ince (the black former Manchester United and Liverpool midfielder) and I was never given the impression by the FA that I should not have given it to him," added Taylor, England manager from 1990-1993.

"Sol is making a real go of giving his book a good sell. I cannot go along with what he is saying."

Campbell, one of the leading black English footballers of his generation, claimed he would have been captain of the national side "for more than 10 years" had he been white.

He made the controversial allegations in a new biography, extracts of which were serialised in Britain's Sunday Times last weekend.

The 39-year--old former Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal defender said: "I believe if I was white, I would have been England captain for more than 10 years -- it's as simple as that.

"I think the FA (England's governing Football Association) wished I was white. I had the credibility, performance-wise to be captain," added Campbell, who led his country on three occasions.

But other black former England internationals disputed Campbell's contention, with Arsenal great Ian Wright saying: "I think he's got the credentials to be captain, but to be captain for 10 years? I'm not sure when you see some of the players that were around then."

- 'Better candidates at the time' -

"I want a captain that goes in and gets you going. Sol has never had the demeanour where he is aggressive on the pitch and put people in their place," added Wright, who played alongside Campbell for England in the 1990s

"People say David Beckham wasn't like that, but he only had to raise his eyebrows to put someone in their place. Maybe Sol could have grown into it but it's down to the manager who he wants.

"Sol was more than good enough to be a captain but I personally believe there were better candidates at the time."

John Barnes, the former England winger who as a black player in the late 1970s and early 1980s had bananas thrown at him by racist fans and was subjected to abusive taunts from the terraces, also thought Campbell was wide of the mark.

"I don't think Sol would have been captain for 10 years because if you look at who the captains were -- Tony Adams and then after that Alan Shearer," Barnes said.

"Then David Beckham became captain and that was a PR exercise for the FA. I don't think necessarily it was because of the colour of Sol's skin."

Sven Goran-Eriksson, England manager for much of Campbell's international career, was equally adamant race had played no part in his captaincy choice.

"Not a chance - during my years, not a chance," the Swede told Britain's Daily Telegraph in an interview published on Monday.

Sunday saw former FA executive director David Davies, at the organisation when Campbell was a player, deny English football chiefs applied any kind of pressure on managers over the choice of national captain.

"My belief is (the allegations) are wrong," Davies said.

So far the current FA hierarchy have made no public response to Campbell's remarks and British media reports said it was understood they had no plans to comment.

- AFP 

For the latest on national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and like our Facebook page!



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Shakila Alivitsa
Helping you find the type of man ...

To put it simply, you can’t go looking for fish in a meat market; you have to go to a fish market. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Mudavadi set for 2 month long wes...

Musalia Mudavadi is set for western Kenya campaigns.

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
I need a miracle to win in 2017, ...

An MP says that he needs a miracle to win the 2017 elections but has not given up on victory despite the odds being against him. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Raila ungrateful for my help, MP ...

An MP says that he made ODM famous in Meru and has accused the party of ungratefulness despite his hard work. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
I'm ready for by-election today, ...

I'm ready for a by election, an angry ODM rebel MP tells Raila Odinga. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
ODM kicks 6 MPs out of Parliament...

ODM has kicked 6 rebel members out of house committees. Read more...