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England women's coach Mark Sampson sacked after 'inappropriate behavior'

England women's team coach Mark Sampson has been fired following allegations of "inappropriate and unacceptable behavior." The 34-year-old has also faced allegations of racism and harassment in recent months.

British broadcaster BBC reported on Wednesday that Sampson, who led England to the semifinals of Euro 2017, will depart over the latest allegations.

An English Football Association (FA) statement said that when Sampson was manager of Bristol Academy in 2014 "safeguarding allegations" were made against him about his time with Bristol. The safeguarding assessment was that he did not pose a risk working in the game.

The statement went on to say that the full report came to the organization's attention last week and that it is now their judgement that it "revealed clear evidence of inappropriate and unacceptable behavior by a coach."

The former Swansea City youth coach has twice been cleared over the claims made last year by former star Eniola Aluko concerning racial discrimination, bullying and harassment, a stance reiterated by the FA in the statement.

The governing body have faced widespread criticism over their inquiry, including from anti-racism campaign group Kick It Out and the Professional Footballers' Association (PFA).

Nigeria-born Aluko, who is a qualified lawyer and won 102 caps, said that Sampson made a "highly inappropriate remark" with "derogatory, racial and prejudicial connotations" in a 2015 meeting and criticized her former teammates for celebrating with their boss in Tuesday night's 6-0 win over Russia.

Many England players, including captain Steph Houghton, have come out in support of Sampson, who has strongly denied all the allegations and said earlier this month he had a "clear conscience."

mp/dv (AFP, Reuters)

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