Socceroos coach Osieck apologises for sexist slur
Australia’s national football team coach Holger Osieck has apologised for a sexist joke he made, where he suggested “women should shut up in public”, following Australia’s 4-0 win over Jordan in Tuesday’s (11 June) FIFA World Cup qualifier.
Osieck (pictured top) used the phrase in a conversation with Football Federation Australia (FFA) media operations manager Adam Mark while taking his seat behind the desk at Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium.
“You want to sit here?” the German said, before joking: “You push me around like my wife.
“There is a [Latin] saying [translation]…[meaning] ‘women should shut up in public’.
“I say it to my wife at home, it is a private one, OK.”
Following the slur, which sparked a damning media story, Osieck was quick to apologise.
“[It was] a quote from Latin,” he explained.
“I translated that quote and in order to clarify, the quote was from the apostle St Paul which he used in one of the early writings of Christianity in his parish in Anatolia.
“Now I get some information that it obviously created waves and that was definitely not the intent and to everyone who may feel offended by that, I would offer a sincere apology.
“I don’t know how it’s been taken in public but definitely, it was off the record.
“It was more a funny remark and I saw the YouTube [clip of the incident] as well and I put on that I used it at home to tell my wife, because sometimes she was a little bit, let’s say, too talkative.
“So it was nothing against any women or whatever.
“It’s definitely a complete misunderstanding.
“I have a lot of respect to women and I have been married for a number of years and I’m still pretty happy with my wife so everything is ok.”
The FFA, meanwhile, welcomed the apology.
“Holger has sincerely apologised and made it clear that he did not mean to cause offence with his comments,” chief executive David Gallop said.
“Diversity is a strength of football and respect for all participants is fundamental.
“Football is the most inclusive and accessible sport in this nation with over 20 per cent of its participants being female.”
The slur came less than two weeks after FFA Board member Moya Dodd was co-opted as a member of FIFA’s ruling Executive Board.
“Women have a strong voice in our game at board and senior management level,” said Gallop.
“Clearly therefore any comment that implies women should remain silent in public is well out of step with the values of FFA and the Australian football community.”
From Inside the Games