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Page last updated at 16:07 GMT, Tuesday, 5 April 2011 17:07 UK

Premier League boss Richards 'sad' at Triesman remarks

Sir Dave Richards
Richards said the suggestion of bullying was particularly hurtful

Premier League chairman Sir Dave Richards has said remarks about him by former Football Association head Lord Triesman left him "sad and dejected".

In February, Triesman had told a Parliamentary committee Richards had blocked efforts for change in football.

But at the same committee on Tuesday Richards said: "To think the Premier League chairman could block nine others [board members] is ridiculous.

"Secondly he said I bullied people. That really hurt me."

Richards said the bullying accusation was particularly hurtful because of his work away from football.

"For 12 years I've been one of the chairmen of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, which raised a quarter of a billion pounds for children for bullying and abuse," he said.

"He knew that, and how passionate I am about these different styles of things, which makes me wonder why he said such a thing."

In a BBC interview earlier this year, former FA chairman Triesman said the relationship between the FA and Premier League was one of competition rather than partnership.

"Their brand needed to dominate and that I think is how I see it," he said.

"If you accept it, you live with a very, very weak Football Association that doesn't really comply with Fifa's regulations."

Richards said he thought he had a good relationship with Triesman and was surprised by some of the comments.

"I thought I was reasonably close to Lord Triesman," he said.

"We travelled extensively together, I helped him very much when he wanted to be introduced to people and taken into different places, I went with him and was always very supportive.

"Why he would ever think I blocked him - there may have been differences of opinion between us but I never brought them into the boardroom."

Richard Scudamore
Scudamore spoke up in defence of the Premier League's success

Premier League chief executive Richard Scudamore also spoke to the Parliamentary committee.

He defended the Premier League's economic success, but said it was a double-edged sword as clubs were in danger of gambling to try and get a piece of the competition's success.

"Football is an optimisic upwardly mobile aspirational buinsess, and there's nothing wrong with that - Prime Minister Cameron would be proud," he said.

"The best and worst thing about the Premier League is how successful it's been.

"Our success in terms of attendance [60% growth] since we started, our [TV]viewing audience and revenue have clearly been a success, which means more and more clubs want to be part of it.

"The Championship clubs all want to be in it despite the fact that they might like to criticise us when they're not in it - that's the reality of English football.

"We're not advocating people overstretching themselves to the point of putting themselves at risk which is why we've talked about all the rules to stop that happening."

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see also
FA changes impossible - Triesman
08 Feb 11 |  Football
Is football fit for purpose?
08 Feb 11 |  Premier League
Scudamore defends transfer spree
04 Feb 11 |  Premier League
Scudamore supports new Uefa rules
17 Jan 11 |  Premier League
No finance bans for clubs - Scudamore
17 Jan 11 |  Football

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