FA RESPONDS TO INDEPENDENT REPORT INTO NON-RECENT CHILD SEXUAL ABUSE IN FOOTBALL
Mark Bullingham, chief executive of the Football Association, said: "I am proud to lead the FA and know the positive impact that football can have throughout the country. Getting people active, learning the power of teamwork and having fun together. As a youth team coach, I see that impact every week.
"However, today is a dark day for the beautiful game. One in which we must acknowledge the mistakes of the past and ensure that we do everything possible to prevent them being repeated.
"Earlier today, Clive Sheldon QC published his independent report into allegations of non-recent child sexual abuse in football. This report is a very important piece of work and was commissioned by the FA after Survivors bravely came forward in November 2016.
"I’ve had the privilege of meeting some Survivors, whose courage is inspirational and whose stories are incredibly moving. They will never forget what has happened to them, and this report will now ensure the game will never forget either.
"So, today I address the Survivors directly, as the people that matter most. To them I say:
"You have the deepest admiration of the FA. Your bravery throughout this process has been incredible. Your voices have been so powerful.
"I'd like to start by giving a heartfelt apology on behalf of the Football Association and the English game to all Survivors, that this happened to you within football. No child should ever have experienced the abuse you did.
"What you went through was horrific and it is deeply upsetting that more was not done by the game at the time, to give you the protection you deserved.
"There are consistent features in this review. Of bystanders who didn’t do anything. Of children that weren’t believed. Of the damage that has been caused.
A story can be found on the FA's website which includes links to the full report - https://bit.ly/3vzLcfx