Police cheifs have advised that over 350 people have come out as being past victims of football child abuse by their former coaches. The NSPCC says more than 860 people have called since its dedicated football hotline set up at the end of November.
Police forces are investigating allegations in the following regions:
- North Wales
- North Yorkshire
- Greater Manchester
- Police Scotland
- Avon and Somerset
- Devon and Cornwall
Former coach Barry Bennell, who worked for Crewe Alexandra, Manchester City, Stoke and several junior teams in north-west England and the Midlands, has been at the centre of the unfolding scandal. Ex-Sheffield United player Mr Woodward said he was abused by Bennell at Crewe Alexandra, he was the first victim who was brave enough to publicly come out with his story.
Manchester City have expressed that “the club is aware of allegations that Barry Bennell had an association with Manchester City in the 1980s”. As a result the club is currently undertaking a thorough investigation of any past links he might have had with the organisation.
The sport could face allegations on the scale of the Jimmy Savile scandal, if not more.
Football in Britain is notably prone to problems. The organisations that run it are rich, powerful and conscious of the sport’s reputation. That gives them the means and incentive to cover up abuse. The Football Association are currently reviewing what officials knew about the football child abuse.
If you or someone you know has been a vicitm of this terrible scandal please contact us for a free, confidential chat with our Principle Solicitor, Mr Ronnie Hutcheon who has a wealth of knowledge of the sporting-legal world.