“I’m not a sexist”: England women’s coach Neville defends tweets

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BURTON-UPON-TRENT, England (AP) Rejecting accusations he is a sexist, Phil Neville says he has the character and status to be a role model after taking on the “ultimate job” as coach of England’s national women’s team.

The decision to hire the former Manchester United defender brought scrutiny last week because of his lack of coaching experience and his posting of tweets six years ago that were deemed sexist and misogynistic.

Neville says “my character stands up to any accusation that has been leveled at me … I’ve lived my life right. I think I have a lot of respect within the game” — from Sky Sports:

“It was that wording that disappointed me more than any of them because it obviously relates to domestic violence. That tweet wasn’t sent out as a joke to domestic violence. It was in a period when I was on holiday with my wife.

“It relates to something I was doing with my wife in terms of a sporting, competitive nature. But it’s not right, the wording of the tweet was not right and I’m disappointed I used that terminology.”

The 41-year-old Neville was presented Monday as the England coach and says he isn’t using the job as a “stepping stone” to other positions in the game.