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Unbiased overview into the PFA might be revealed subsequent yr

Independent review into the PFA could be published next year as board unveils four new executive directors charged with finding successor to Gordon Taylor 

  • An independent review into the PFA could be published as early as next year  
  • Gordon Taylor is set to step down as chief executive at the end of the season  
  • John Mousinho insisted that Taylor has not kept the report under wraps
  • The Oxford skipper has helped appoint four new non-executive directors

The long-awaited, potentially damaging independent review into the Professional Footballers’ Association could be published next year – should a new players’ board agree.

Speaking after the unveiling of the four non-executive directors who will find a successor to Gordon Taylor, management committee member John Mousinho denied that the outgoing chief executive had kept the report, said to be ‘scathing’, under wraps.

More than two years ago, following a bombshell interview in this newspaper in which PFA chair Ben Purkiss called for urgent change, the trade union commissioned a QC-led review.

A potentially damaging independent review into the Professional Footballers’ Association could be published next year

It was completed in July and recommended a governance overhaul which is ongoing. But its details remain undisclosed and there have been fears that it may never see the light of day at £2m a year Taylor’s behest.

However, Oxford United’s Mousinho, who assisted former Manchester United and England defender Gary Neville and lawyer Ed Canty in the search for the quartet, denied that was the case.

‘It’s not Gordon’s decision as to whether we publish the review or not,’ he said. ‘The decision hasn’t been taken to not publish the review, if that makes sense? It is an ongoing issue and we have just restructured the management committee so it is now a players’ board and it’s going to be an issue that resurfaces, most likely in the new year and it’s one for the new players board to discuss.

Management committee member John Mousinho denied that outgoing chief executive Gordon Taylor had kept the report, said to be 'scathing', under wraps

Management committee member John Mousinho denied that outgoing chief executive Gordon Taylor had kept the report, said to be ‘scathing’, under wraps

‘The decision hasn’t been made and certainly not been made by Gordon unilaterally.’

The four new directors, industry heavyweights, are Amazon executive Darren Hardman, Facebook executive Trevor Johnson, the chair of Women in Football Ebru Koksal and youth activist and leading sports administrator Geoff Thompson.

In what is a diverse group, only one member – Hardman – is a white male. They will now find a replacement for Taylor who announced he would depart by the end of the season.

Neville remained neutral over publication of the report. ‘You’re absolutely right, I do have an opinion on whether the independent review should be published or not,’ he said.

Gary Neville remained neutral on whether the report should be published but said he had faith that the new non-executive directors would do the right thing by the organisation

Gary Neville remained neutral on whether the report should be published but said he had faith that the new non-executive directors would do the right thing by the organisation

‘I think it would be extremely unhelpful of me today to say that that review should be published or not published based on the fact we’ve just appointed four outstanding individuals who need to get their feet under the table, they need to appoint a new CEO and I have absolute faith that they will do the right thing by themselves and by the organisation in the next 12 months.

‘It isn’t my job, as Gary Neville, to publish or not publish that review. I am essentially an outsider, and that isn’t me shirking the question.’ Neville, who has now completed his work with the PFA, did add: ‘I want independence, I want transparency, and I want football to change and come out of this rut it is in.’ Neville also pointed out that candidates were asked for their thoughts on dementia in football as part of the interview process.

A Charity Commission investigation into the PFA charity is ongoing.

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