Football

Sol Campbell slams FA as racist

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Former Arsenal and Tottenham defender Sol Campbell has branded the FA as racist, suggesting he was overlooked for the England captaincy because of his skin colour.

Campbell - who was capped 73 times in an illustrious career - believes he would have worn the armband had he been white.

The remarks come from his new authorised biography, serialised in the Sunday Times.

"I believe if I was white I would've been England captain for more than 10 years," Campbell says.

"It's as simple as that. I think the FA wished I was white. I had the credibility, performance-wise, to be captain. I was consistently in the heart of the defence and I was a club captain early on my career.

"I don't think [the attitude] will change because they don't want it to, and probably the majority of them don't want it, either. It's all right to have black captains and mixed-race in the under-18s and under-21s, but not for the full national side. There is a ceiling and although no one has ever said it, I believe it's made of glass."

During his time as an England regular, Campbell was renowned for the consistency of his performances. 

He was named in the team of the tournament in both the 2002 World Cup and Euro 2004, along with winning numerous honours with club side Arsenal.

Campbell watched on as the likes of David Beckham, John Terry, Steven Gerrard and even Michael Owen were handed the armband before him.

And the strong centre back believes the appointment of Owen in particular raises questions.

"Michael Owen was made a captain ahead of me. I thought: 'What is going on here?' I think the FA didn't want me to have a voice … it was embarrassing. I've asked myself many times why I wasn't [captain]. I keep coming up with the same answer. It was the colour of my skin." he says in his new book.

Campbell scored once in his international career, in the 1-1 draw against Sweden at the 2002 World Cup.

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Topics:
Football
England Football
Sol Campbell

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