| 7.2°C Belfast

FA braced for new attacks

The Football Association is braced for the publication of a highly personalised attack on those at the top level of the game considered by Lord Triesman to be “greedy, corrupt and ignorant,” with the deposed chairman's former aide Melissa Jacobs understood to be in two minds about whether to share more revelations from her recorded conversation with him.

The married Labour peer, with whom Ms Jacobs claims she was having an affair, is understood to have spoken at length to her about colleagues at the Football Association and at the top of the game in general and there are understood to be more anti-Russian comments from him, with suggestions of a Russian “mafia” at work at Roman Abramovich's Chelsea.

There was more bad news for the FA last night as Fifa asked for the national body to provide for a report into Lord Triesman's alleged comments.

The FA had hoped they had drawn a line under the episode by moving so swiftly to remove Lord Triesman as both its own and the 2018 bid chairman on Sunday and to bring in Geoff Thompson to run the bid, a role he began yesterday with meetings with bid chief executive Andy Anson and chief of staff Simon Greenberg.

But if Ms Jacobs decides to share more recordings, it is possible that those remaining at the top level of the organisation may be tainted by their publication next Sunday, just 24 hours after Thompson's bid team attempts to salvage England's reputation by meeting Fifa president Sepp Blatter at Saturday's Champions League final between Bayern Munich and Inter Milan in Madrid.

Though friends of Ms Jacob said yesterday that she was surprised to find that Lord Triesman had been removed so quickly from his positions, she is clearly considering sharing more revelations with the man who employed her as an aide when he was a minister at the Department for Innovation, Skills and Training.

Friends suggested that Ms Jacob, who follows football and is an Arsenal supporter, has taken some satisfaction from knowing that an individual who was so negative about the game is no longer involved in the 2018 bid.

Daily Headlines & Evening Telegraph Newsletter

Receive today's headlines directly to your inbox every morning and evening, with our free daily newsletter.

This field is required

But there is no denying that money was an objective: Ms Jacobs is believed to have earned £75,000 from Sunday's first tap recorded revelations, in which Lord Triesman alleged that England's two main challengers to host 2018 — Russia and Spain — were colluding to bribe referees at this summer's World Cup in South Africa.

Sources say that it was also her desire to divert the focus from the sexual relationship she alleges to have had with the 61-year-old which led her to take a tape recorded into a one-hour meeting she had with him two weeks ago and see the focus shift to football.

The disclosure that Ms Jacobs has more information yet to yield up raises potential for her to earn a handsome sum by being paid off, as Vanessa Perroncel was after her relationship with John Terry.

Meanwhile, Lord Sugar says he would consider it a “great honour” to become the new chairman of the Football Association.

Sugar said: “The FA is a great organisation. It would be a great honour to try to assist — it would be quite a challenge.

“I've long thought there needs to be a reform in the constitution of the FA.”


Top Videos



Privacy