Jamaica’s women’s football team coach Hubert Busby Jr accused of sexual coercion

The head coach of the Jamaica women’s football team – Hubert Busby Jr – has been accused of trying to solicit sex from a player when he was in charge of the Vancouver Whitecaps women’s team in 2010

The head coach of the Jamaica women’s football team – Hubert Busby Jr – has been accused of trying to solicit sex from a player when he was in charge of the Vancouver Whitecaps women’s team a decade ago.

The allegations were made by former player Malloree Enoch and published in The Guardian.

She told the British newspaper that she had contacted Busby in September 2010 regarding an administrative job with the Vancouver Whitecaps. Busby allegedly suggested that she play for the team instead.

This resulted in a recruitment process, during which the alleged incidents of sexual misconduct and inappropriate behaviour took place.

According to Enoch, Busby often took her to restaurants for one-on-one meals, and asked her to stay with him in his hotel room while he was working as Whitecaps coach.

On one occasion, she reportedly stayed in a hotel room in Los Angeles with Busby for three nights, and no sexual advances were made. But Enoch detailed how that changed during another incident in Orlando.

"He insisted I stay because now it was late and when I agreed it was far too late to drive back," she told The Guardian. "When we got back to the hotel he again didn’t have a room reserved for me. I had to stay in his room.

"This particular night there were two beds and I laid in my own bed and he made his way to my bed and at some point was standing over the top of me.

"He was on all fours fully on the bed. He was definitely aroused. He tried to kiss and touch me. The light was not on but I don’t think he had his shirt on. I had to negotiate to get him off the bed. I told him I wasn’t interested."

Enoch added: "I think there was a lot of emotion. I was definitely scared. I had this dream to be a soccer player and I was trying to pursue something I had wanted to do since I was five and now I was put in a really shitty position.

"He was using this power because he had something that I wanted. I was very uncomfortable. I was resistant to it and he tried to pursue it and pursue it and then he got pissed off and went over to his own bed and went to sleep."

Enoch said she did not tell the club of the alleged misconduct at the time as she was "embarrassed" and did not want to ruin her chances of joining the team. She was soon signed as a player.

At the end of the 2011 season, the Vancouver Whitecaps players sent an email to club officials complaining about inappropriate behavior by Busby and his coaching staff. Enoch also sent a separate email with details of her own experiences.

Vancouver Whitecaps responded by hiring an ombudsman to interview the players.

Following the interviews, the club’s chief executive Dan Lenarduzzi told the players "it was in the club’s best interest to make a change in coaching staff for our women’s team programme", but asked them to not comment on the matter publicly.

Busby, who went on to work with Western New York Flash and Seattle Sounders, rejected all of Enoch’s allegations and claimed he was not dismissed from Vancouver Whitecaps for inappropriate behaviour.

The 52-year-old served as an assistant coach with the Jamaica women's national team at the 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup in France, and became head coach last year.

The Jamaica Football Federation released a statement revealing it would meet with Busby to discuss the allegations on Tuesday.

The abuse claims are the latest to hit women’s football in North America, after several players made allegations of sexual misconduct in the NWSL. GiveMeSport Women columnist Lucy Bronze has discussed the scandal here

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