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Friday, August 14, 1998 Published at 13:46 GMT 14:46 UK

Sport: Football

Rumpus over Hoddle's 'kick-and-tell' tales

Hoddle: Calls for his resignation

The co-writer of Glenn Hoddle's controversial diary of the 1998 World Cup has defended the book, saying the England coach was "duty bound" to give his version of events.

David Davies: "Glenn was duty bound to give his version"
David Davies, also chief spokesman for the Football Association, denied that he had a conflict of interest in writing the book which senior fooball figures have heavily criticised.

In the book, serialised before publication in The Sun newspaper, Hoddle reveals that Paul Gascoigne acted "like a man possessed" when he was dropped from the France 98 squad.

Turning to David Beckham, infamously sent off in England's critical match against Argentina, Hoddle writes that he needs the help of the coach's personal faith healer, Eileen Drewery.

[ image: Faith in Hodd: Eileen Drewery]
Faith in Hodd: Eileen Drewery
Observing the furore which surrounded the Manchester United player when he returned home, Hoddle comments: "I believe that with everything that has happened since, (David Beckham) needs help more than ever."

But criticisms of the book have grown since it was revealed that the Football Association did not read the transcript before giving the go-ahead to publish.

David Davies said that the England coach was the "last person on earth" to break a confidence and the book would do nothing to break a bond of trust between player and coach.

[ image: David Davies: Hoddle
David Davies: Hoddle "protects confidences"
"What this all seems to be about is this incident with Paul Gascoigne," said Mr Davies.

"It is entirely true that on June 1 Glenn gave a very limited version of what had happened (between the pair).

"On June 2 Paul Gascoigne chose for his own reasons to give a very graphic account.

"Glenn in a diary of the World Cup was duty bound to give his version."

What Glenn Hoddle said in June after dropping Gazza
Mr Davies, who said Hoddle had paid him for his help, denied that there was anything wrong in writing the book.

"When in 1986 and 1990 the then England manager did books with an outside journalist from a national newspaper, there were huge complaints that this journalist was given special treatment.

"In this case there is no conflict of interest."

PFA attacks book

[ image: Robson: Called for press to leave Gazza alone]
Robson: Called for press to leave Gazza alone
But the Professional Footballers' Association said that FA had put itself in a "ridiculous position" by allowing its chief spokesman's name to be put to a book they had not even read.

Chief Executive Gordon Taylor said: "It is quite ironic because the FA in the past has often chosen to charge others with bringing the game into disrepute for comments, allegations or controversy much less than its own England manager has done."

Bryan Robson and Gordon Taylor join the chorus of criticism
And Bryan Robson, former England star and manager of Gascoigne's current club, Middlesbrough, added his voice to the criticisms.

He said: "Gazza was out of the England spotlight, yet he seems to be hyped up all the time.

"It is nonsense when people will not leave him alone.

"They should let him settle down and play the game.

"What players do on the training ground and football pitch is all that counts."

Gazza "overwhelmed"

[ image: Gazza: Spoke to The Sun after being dropped]
Gazza: Spoke to The Sun after being dropped
Meanwhile, Paul Gascoigne's advisor Mel Stein said the midfielder had been "absolutely overwhelmed" by the show of public support.

Mr Stein said: "He has been very touched and encouraged by the way people have so roundly condemned the England coach and sympathised with him.

"A lot of people have said Hoddle should apologise to Paul, but it is not for us to comment on that.

"If Hoddle thinks that what he has done is correct, then it is not for us to tell him to apologise."

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