The Football Association are reviewing Deji Davies’ historic anti-Israeli tweets, while it has emerged he was not subject to stringent background checks before his appointment.
Davies, who has been the FA’s Inclusion Advisory Board chair since October last year, deleted his Twitter posts from 2013 calling for the Under-21 tournament in Israel to be boycotted. “Shouldn’t be held in Israel at all. Certainly won’t be watching #FreePalestine,” he wrote.
The FA have used the Mintz Group to look into the background of some staff appointments but it is understood they were not used for Davies when he came to the governing body 13 months ago. The Mintz Group are experts in “Executive Diligence”, carrying out background checks and on their website say they “uncover inconsistencies, omissions and red flags” among their work.
It has been confirmed that Davies’ posts are part of a wider FA audit into the recent episode that saw them decide not to light up the Wembley arch in the Israel colours during England’s friendly against Australia.
Telegraph Sport reported that failing to address Davies’ tweets sparked anger among some of the FA’s council, which includes divisional representatives and County Association representatives. Davies, in his role as IAB chair, sits on the council which has more than 100 members.
Davies, who is also a Brentford director, issued a statement saying the tweet was deleted and that he continues to learn about the subject and stands by the FA’s message of peace and unity for all.
Davies, who was involved in other Twitter exchanges over Israeli policies in tweets from 2013, when he was not involved with the FA, said in his statement: “As I do not wish to cause any further offence, they have been deleted,” he wrote. “Since then I have learned more about the complexities of what is clearly an incredibly difficult, nuanced subject and I continue to learn.
“My current views on the situation are clear, the barbaric acts of Hamas last weekend were horrific and resulted in the loss of many innocent victims. What is now occurring with the loss of innocent lives across Israel and Palestine is heartbreaking and I stand behind the FA’s message of peace and unity for all.”