Chelsea Football Club have shown support to elder sister of Nigeria forward Sone Aluko, Eniola, following reports that she was discriminated against by England women’s national team coach Mark Sampson.
On Monday, England and Chelsea Ladies striker Aluko, in an interview with the Guardian, made more revelations about how she was discriminated against by Sampson with the latest being an Ebola remark made about her family by the England coach.
In a statement released on Tuesday, Chelsea, who signed Aluko in 2012, commended the player for her courage.
“We commend Eni for coming forward and speaking about her experiences,” the statement reads.
“Chelsea football club finds any and all forms of discrimination abhorrent and it is imperative that players are supported when coming forward to speak about these issues.”
Meanwhile, the Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) has backed the call for “an open, transparent and independent investigation” into how Aluko’s grievances were handled by the Football Association.
Commenting on the issue the PFA’s chief executive, Gordon Taylor, said the players’ union would be fully behind a second independent inquiry.
“The Professional Footballers’ Association has been providing support and assistance to our member, Eniola Aluko, from the first moment she made us aware of her experiences of playing for the England team,” Taylor said in a statement to Press Association.
“We were naturally shocked and very concerned when we learned of the serious issues Eni had faced and immediately offered her independent legal advice to pursue her complaints together with any other support she felt would be helpful in the circumstances.
“This led to the instruction of a leading employment and discrimination QC who provided ongoing advice to Eni and represented her in respect of her complaints against the Football Association.
“Her complaints were pursued vigorously and this led to the Football Association entering into discussions with Eni and her advisers regarding a financial settlement which she was ultimately prepared to accept.
“Understandably, we share Eni’s concerns regarding what has occurred and would fully support an open, transparent and independent investigation into her experiences and any other incidents which any of her team-mates may also wish to raise.
“We feel that this is very important to ensure that these serious issues are properly dealt with and to also ensure that an appropriate process is put in place to give any other players the confidence to raise any similar issues.
“Finally, we continue to provide support for Eni and will do so for any other member who requires our assistance in relation to this matter.”