Pool chairman Oyston facing ‘retard’ texts probe

Blackpool fan Steve Smith
Blackpool fan Steve Smith
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Pool chairman Karl Oyston could be facing an FA probe after becoming embroiled in an extraordinary text row with a disgruntled Blackpool fan.

Oyston was contacted by Blackpool fan Steve Smith via text, questioning his running of the club in a series of lengthy messages.

The text conversation, seen by The Gazette, starts reasonably conciliatory but descends into a lengthy expletive-ridden exchange.

South Shore father-of-three Mr Smith, 31, accuses Oyston, who was also on the receiving end of abuse, of being clueless who then reportedly responds by saying: “Sorry your life is so (blank), but that’s only your fault not mine. Enjoy the rest of your special needs day out.”

A text sent from Oyston’s phone then reads: “Are you sure we’ve met? I would have remembered such a massive retard.”

On Sunday, Oyston, who was elected to the Football League board of directors in 2006, refused to comment on the story.

The FA confirmed it was aware of the row but no investigation has been launched at this stage.

Ismail Kaji and Leroy Binns, who have a learning disability and work for the charity Mencap, said: “A lot of people with a learning disability, like me, are passionate football supporters. I would feel ashamed however to support any football club that has a chairman who uses such disgusting language to people with a disability.

“This language is just as bad as using racist or homophobic words.

“There is no difference and it makes me sick.

“Someone with a high profile should act as a role model, not needlessly insult the people that look up to them.

“Regardless of his position though, what he said should not be tolerated.

“The chairman must apologise to the people who will have been deeply affected by the language aimed at them. This cannot be ignored.”

SEE THE GAZETTE ON MONDAY FOR THE FULL STORY AND COMMENTS FROM MR SMITH