England striker Eni Aluko accused Football Association (FA) chief executive Martin Glenn of “blackmail” as she gave evidence to a parliamentary inquiry into allegations of racism yesterday.
Aluko made the allegation to the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport select committee after sacked England Women manager Mark Sampson was found guilty of racially abusing her and team-mate Drew Spence at the third time of asking.
During her evidence to the committee, Aluko, who has been capped 102 times by her country, was quizzed about the FA withholding the second part of an £80,000 settlement which she had reached with the governing body.
“I had one meeting with Martin Glenn and he said if I wrote a statement that the Football Association is not institutionally racist, they would release the payment,” said Aluko.
“I believed that bordered on blackmail. I categorically refused to write any statement. It is not for me to say that the FA is not institutionally racist.
“For Martin Glenn to say I should say that in order to get a payment I was contractually agreed to was appalling.”
Glenn disputes the Nigeria-born Aluko’s version of events and denies the allegation. When asked why she had still not received the money, the 30-year-old added: “The FA claimed I was defamatory in a tweet I sent and they felt they were legally entitled to withhold the payment. I disagree with that.
“They were keen for me to speak freely about the case. I have spoken factually about my views on how this case was handled and Sampson’s behaviour.”
Chelsea forward Aluko has not played for England since accusing Sampson of racial abuse last year.