Sepp Blatter’s year has probably got even worse after hearing this news…
The disgraced FIFA president said the women’s game would be more appealing if players wore ‘tighter shorts’ and it seems he got his wish when the Lingerie Football League UK finally launched last month in Manchester.
However, they’re now claiming that they have been ‘banned’ by the Football Association.
They had arranged a tournament at the FA’s national training centre – St George’s Park – on January 30, with a 14-strong team set to take on university teams and raise money for charity Help For Heroes.
But the FA have said they cancelled the event because they did not feel it was an appropriate event to take place at one of their venues and they informed the organisers directly.
The league’s founder – Gemma Hughes – said the FA confirmed her team could participate in the tournament on January 6 and they set up a fundraising page on Just Giving.
However, when another Twitter user asked Simmons whether the Lingerie Football League were being allowed to play at SGP, she replied:
Hi no we are not and they've been instructed in writing that it will not take place at SGP. https://t.co/FaZ3NMndj0
— Kelly Simmons (@KellySimmo1) January 17, 2016
But Gemma claimed that she did not receive any communication from the footballing body and only discovered the event had been cancelled after reading this tweet.
When I received an email from Just Giving on January 21 saying that the FA had been in touch and wanted us to take the fundraising page down I realised the FA had cancelled our event. At this point we had not received any communication from the FA, to find out via Twitter is appalling.
After she contacted the FA, they confirmed ‘they will never play at SGP or any other FA affiliated ground, effectively banning the Lingerie Football League.’
However, the FA say Hughes was contacted by staff at SGP on January 8 and then informed in writing the following week that the event had been cancelled.
An FA spokesperson said:
Gemma Hughes has told us everything we need to know about her venture through her misleading statement to the media. This is nothing more than a PR stunt which leaves us comfortable with our decision to not take this booking. We have grown the women’s game to this point without her venture, and frankly will continue to do so without her assistance.
It’s fair to say the league attracted controversy when it launched, after feminist groups claimed their outfits objectify women.
This is probably the sort of attention they really don’t want or need right now…