Mark Sampson Author: Mark Geraint Sampson is a Welsh football coach who is presently working as an assistant manager at Stevenage Football Club in the Championship.
Sampson was born and reared in Creigiau, a suburb of Cardiff, where he played amateur football for Cardiff Corinthians, a team managed by his brother, who was also his idol.
Sampson began working with the Football Association of Wales Trust in 2003 as a coaching co-ordinator after finishing a BA in sports development at the University of Wales Institute. Afterward, he worked as a coach at Cardiff City, where he taught young players.
Sampson was appointed as the director of Swansea City’s center of excellence in 2007, while the club was under the direction of Roberto Martnez. He remained in that position until 2009. His appointment as manager of Welsh Football League club Taff’s Well, where he had previously served as the club’s youth team coach, occurred in November 2008.
After leaving Taff’s Well in May 2010, he was appointed manager of FA Women’s Premier League club Bristol Academy, a position he held until the end of 2010. He guided the team to a second-place position in the 2013 FA Women’s Super League season, the club’s best-ever finish, as well as to two FA Women’s Cup final appearances in 2010–11 and 2012–13.
Sampson was hired as the manager of the England women’s national team in December 2013. England won the Cyprus Cup in March of this year. Later in the year, he guided England to the semifinals of the FIFA Women’s World Cup, marking the first time the country has advanced past the group stage of a World Cup since 1998. In the match for third place, England defeated Germany for the first time in 21 games, avenging their semi-final defeat to the Japanese team.
Sampson was fired as manager of the England women’s national team on September 20, 2017, following an investigation by the Football Association into what they described as “clear evidence of inappropriate and unacceptable behavior by a coach” during his tenure as manager of Bristol Academy prior to his appointment as England coach in 2014.
Despite the fact that an FA inquiry into the charges that led to his dismissal determined in 2014 that “he did not pose a risk working in the game,” the decision to terminate his employment was made when top FA executives read the complete report in 2017 and reached the same conclusion.
It was decided to fire Sampson after the Football Association investigated claims of racial behavior and remarks made by Eniola Aluko against him. The FA handled two investigations, the second of which was an independent investigation conducted by a barrister, Katharine Newton, which resulted in Sampson’s exoneration from all charges.
According to a press release issued by the Football Association following his dismissal, they maintained their confidence in those findings and stated that his dismissal was unrelated to that issue, saying, “In respect of investigations into specific allegations made by Eniola Aluko in 2016, the Football Association stands by the findings of independent barrister Katharine Newton’s investigation.” Sampson then filed a claim against the Football Association for unjust dismissal.
A third investigation by Katharine Newton concluded that Mark Sampson made comments that were “discriminatory on the basis of race” on the 18th of October, 2017. The Football Association issued an apology to players Eniola Aluko and Drew Spence the following day. The Football Association agreed to pay Sampson a “substantial” cash settlement in January 2019, the same week that his claim for unjust dismissal was scheduled to be heard in court.