The new Portland Timbers head coach Phil Neville says that his series of sexist tweets from 12 years ago “were wrong in 2011 and are wrong today.”
This comes after the club’s independent supporters group, the Timbers Army, issued a statement earlier this month urging the team to reconsider its decision to hire the 46-year-old.
Neville, who formerly managed fellow Major League Soccer side Inter Miami until June of this year, previously addressed the tweets that resurfaced shortly after he was named England women’s manager in 2018.
Speaking at his unveiling, Neville said: “The big part of this city is the supporters, and the statement they put out showed that this club cares about their people.
“In reference to the tweets I made in 2011, I addressed these in 2019 when I was named the head coach of the England women’s team.
“(They are) by no means a reflection of me as a person, of my character, and without a shadow of a doubt, the way I was brought up by my mother and father in terms of the values they instilled in me.
‘The tweets I put out were wrong in 2011, and they’re wrong today. I want to get to know the Timbers Army, I want to get to know everybody in the city, and I want them to get to know me as a person, as a character. And I want to make sure there is an incredible trust between us.”
Portland parted ways with longtime coach Gio Savarese this summer and are also in talks to potentially bring Jason Kreis with Neville as an assistant.
The club is also in discussions to retain Miles Joseph on the staff as well. Joseph served as interim coach following Savarese’s departure and was among the finalists to be named head coach.
What went wrong for Phil Neville at Inter Miami, by the numbers
(Photo: Getty Images)