Mark Sampson in spotlight again after Football Association speaks to Drew Spence

The Football Association has confirmed it has spoken to Chelsea player Drew Spence in relation to complaints of bullying and harassment which have been levelled at England women’s manager Mark Sampson.

FA officials are currently reviewing the discussion to determine whether it has yielded any new information – but appear set to resist calls for the establishment of a new investigation.

An FA spokesperson told Press Association Sport: “This is not a new investigation. We have always said if new information comes to light we will look into it appropriately.”

An internal investigation and independent inquiry, led by barrister Katharine Newton, found no wrongdoing on Sampson’s part following initial allegations made by Spence’s Chelsea team-mate Eni Aluko.

Aluko alleged that Sampson told her to be careful her relatives did not bring Ebola to a game at Wembley. Her 102-cap England career has stalled since she made the claims, which Sampson denies.

One of the chief criticisms levelled at the inquiry was its failure to pursue further allegations that Sampson asked Spence how many times she had been arrested during the 2015 China Cup, despite her never having been arrested.

It is understood the FA maintains the defence that because of Aluko’s decision not to take part in the inquiry, Spence was not formally named, which left the inquiry with no option but to overlook that specific claim at the time.

A Commons select committee hearing is reportedly planned for next month, which would see senior Football Association executives face a parliamentary inquiry over the investigations into Aluko’s claims.

Source: PA

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