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Saying “sorry” not enough after Roan’s comments

I make no secret of my dislike for BBC Sports Editor Dan Roan.

Like many others  who share my feelings, I firmly believe Roan has an anti-West Ham agenda which he has pursued at every opportunity for a number of years beginning with his views on the club benefiting from our occupation of the publicly funded London Stadium.

It’s a topic he returned to at every opportunity, as if it was a personal campaign he was unable to or unwilling to give up on. He was also quickly in front of the cameras again when HMRC were ‘invited’ to examine documents at our club, and others, in relation to their more general enquiries of tax matters in football.

Roan, of course, chose to describe the visit to the LS as a ‘raid’, possibly seeking to give it greater emphasis? You decide!

But whatever my previous thoughts about Roan have been – the man has sunk to a new level and a new low with the apparently ‘mocking’ comments he made, captured by a live microphone, on the private life of Leicester City Chairman Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha.

Comments uttered despite being surrounded by grieving supporters, hundreds of touching floral tributes and shortly after Vichai’s widow, members of his family and the Leicester City players and club staff had been in the ground paying a solemn tribute.

It would be difficult to imagine a more inappropriate time, place or occasion for such comments to be expressed by anyone, certainly not by someone like Roan in such a privileged position.

His brief for being at the King Power Stadium on Monday as a BBC ‘heavyweight’ was surely to add empathy to what was clearly a very solemn occasion. Well he certainly fell well short on that score.

Since then Roan’s appalling comments have been aired, widely circulated, and roundly condemned. In response the broadcaster himself has posted a short and frankly unacceptable apology.

The BBC for their part has said “This was an ill-judged comment made in a private off-air conversation for which Dan has apologised.”

I for one believe that’s simply not enough. Would Roan himself accept such a brief response had he been, in his role as a journalist, pursuing anyone else for the same ‘crime’? Of course not. Neither should we.

More importantly neither should the grieving family of Vichai Scrvaddhanaprabha , Leicester City Football Club and the devastated fans and people of that club and city. They deserve more than that!

Let’s not forget a certain Andy Gray and Richard Keys lost their jobs after being overheard making derogatory comments about a woman, and rightly so. As bad as that was, to me this is worse, given the circumstances.

The abrasive and outspoken Roan should either do the honourable thing, fall on his sword and resign. Failing that the BBC should act as the decent, fair-minded morally aware broadcaster they claim to be, and sack Roan without further delay. Nothing else will do

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About Hugh5outhon1895

Hugh Southon is a lifelong Iron and the founding editor of ClaretandHugh. He is a national newspaper journalist of many years experience and was Bobby Moore's 'ghost' writer during the great man's lifetime. He describes ClaretandHugh as "the Hammers daily newspaper!" Follow on Twitter @hughsouthon

17 comments on “Saying “sorry” not enough after Roan’s comments

  1. He represents all that is bad about journalists. He uses his position to influence people towards his own prejudiced opinions instead of presenting the facts in an unbiased way and letting people make their own mind up. He is a smug, arrogant, nasty piece of work. A short, glib excuse for an apology and back to normal he thinks. Even if he thought he was correct in his suspicions this was neither the place nor time to voice such insensitive comments. How hurtful to the grieving family.

  2. I wholeheartedly agree with you. He acted in a despicable manner and his comments say far more about him than they do about Mr. Srivaddhanaprabha. The BBC is out of control and seems to run according to its own (im)moral agenda, employing the dregs of society. His later comment was more about excusing what he said rather than apologising for it and the BBC spokesman just couldn’t wait, with the metaphorical broom, to sweep it all under the carpet. David Sullivan would go up in my estimation if he told this scum to stay away from our club and asked other clubs to do the same,

  3. The blokes an absolute , and should be given the Spanish archer over this. But knowing the BBC they’ll turn a blind eye. If this was a professional footballer making the same crass comments, Roan would be all over it like a shark in a feeding frenzy. A total of the highest order!

  4. Seems that’s the level of journalism that The BBC has stooped to. Gone are the days when it was the acceptable face of proper broadcasting. Everything now smacks of controversy. He might very well diss us for accepting a deal that no other team were offered. However his bosses at the BBC also rely heavily on the licence fee. Seems a bit two faced of them to criticize us while they are using taxpayers money to employ this crass journalist. BBC has sunk to unfathomable depths,

  5. I have a different take on this.

    I know nothing much about Roan, but whether or not he is anti West Ham isn’t relevant at all to whether he should lose his job over this. Also I should say that like any normal person I sympathise with the family of the Leicester owner, both for their tragic loss & for the fact that Roan’s comments will now be all over the papers. But as I understand it Sky picked up on these comments & broke the story. If so should we not be going after Sky rather than Roan (who clearly would not have intended to have his comments made public). No Sky comments =no story = no further upset for the family.
    If it is right that Sky broke the story shouldn’t they now be apologising for adding to the family’s grief?

    My view is that people should not be sacked for comments made in private conversations. Roan should have been more careful, but he has apologised for his error. That should be the end of it. His comments suggest he may not be a very nice person but that is not grounds for sacking him.

  6. I have now seen another version of events. This suggests Sky did not break the story, but that Roan’s comments were picked up by a Sky ‘live feed’. Don’t fully understand what that means but I guess it means Sky did not actually put the story out. If so, all credit to them. Doesn’t alter the fact that Roan did not intend it to be heard. So I would stand by my main point that he should not be sacked for something he said in a private conversation.

  7. Ron Atkinson,Andy Gray, Richard Keys, all sacked for comments said in private conversations. Why make exceptions for low life Roan because he works for the BBC?

  8. I would not make an exception for him because he works for the BBC. I would not sack him because in my opinion it would be wrong. The fact that it has been done before does not make it right. We are supposed to live in a free country. That should make it possible for you to speak freely in a private conversation.

  9. Then it is his responsibility to ensure the conversation is private. which he obviously didn’t, otherwise we would not now be debating the point.

  10. He is a scum bag, he may have an anti West Ham agenda but it extends to pretty much all of his articles about any number of subjects, I have stopped reading them some time since but if it walks like a ****, talks like a **** it’s probably a ****.

  11. He has accepted responsibility for making a mistake by apologising. Most of us at some time have sent what we thought was a private text or email to somebody we didn’t want to get it by mistake. We probably escape anything worse than the embarrassment of having to apologise because we are not in the public eye. He doesn’t need to do more than that, but the situation is just being made worse by the usual social media bandwagon which just wants to blow everything out of proportion. A lot of the negative comment seems to stem from his alleged hatred of West Ham. By all means attack him for that if you want, but don’t drag in this entirely unrelated incident as a supporting argument.

  12. Poor excuse for an apology. More an acknowledgement that he’d been caught out but hey ho life goes on. Despicable.

  13. Blimey what else do you want? Does he have to go on tv & grovel? Perhaps cry a bit? Lose his job? He made a mistake & apologised for it. If he had tried denying that he meant it he would be a hypocrite, which is what he suggested the Leicester owner was. Yeah let’s move on & find something else to all be offended about.

    • and hope that his wife and family accept it was merely a silly comment from a prominent journalist. We are considering them not the dead man who can’t be slandered anyway in these circumstances

  14. He did try to deny he meant it. At the vert least he was highly insensitive and positively insulting. Not good traits in a public broadcaster. You obviously have a much more liberal view than a lot of others.I personally am much more old school when it comes to casually slandering a good man so recently passed and humiliating his bereaved family.

  15. Well Moro old chap, much as I have enjoyed this frank exchange of views I think I am going to let you have the last word on it. Things to do….I did answer your last comments but either Hugh has censored it or (more likely) I forgot to press ‘post’. Anyway I am glad I was able to put you right on a few points 😂😂😂. Always willing to be of help.

  16. Hugh- yes defamation laws do not apply to the deceased. Also a slanderous statement has to be untrue, which may or may not have been the case here. I take your point about the possible impact on the family. To go back to your original statement at the top, I work on the principle in my life that ‘sorry’ is usually enough. Mooro has obviously taken exception to the form of the apology & I agree there is a grey area when somebody says it with a sneer on their face & you know they don’t mean it. In this case it was a ‘faceless’ apology but I thought it was acceptable. Would I have done if it had been my relative involved…..hand on heart I am not sure. Best thing will be if it never came their attention I guess.

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