AFC Fylde respond to national media reports

AFC Fylde has issued a statement in response to two stories surrounding manager James Rowe that have appeared in the national media.

By Gavin Browne
Friday, 13th May 2022, 8:13 pm

Rowe departed Chesterfield earlier this year after the club had suspended him while investigating unspecified allegations of misconduct.

The Mail Online reported that the allegations concerned sexual indecency and that Chesterfield contacted the FA to express concerns over Rowe’s subsequent appointment as Fylde manager.

The article also claims Fylde did not pursue references from Chesterfield before appointing Rowe, though the club insists it did “due diligence” before naming Jim Bentley’s successor.

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AFC Fylde have responded following two stories appearing in the national media

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Another article was subsequently published, alleging young female physios on internships with the Coasters had been asked to provide Rowe with personal treatment – but without being informed of the allegations against him.

The Coasters have now responded ahead of Sunday’s National League North play-off tie against Boston United.

The club said: “The story in yesterday’s Mail attempts to paint Fylde as a club that does not care for the welfare or safety of its women employees and as one who failed to do its due diligence in this respect regarding James Rowe’s appointment as their manager in March this year. This could not be further from the truth.

“Firstly, they claim Fylde didn’t do their due diligence and did not contact Chesterfield for a reference. This is flawed in many ways.

“Firstly, as Chesterfield are fully aware, James and themselves had reached a compromise agreement regarding his departure, which means neither party were able to discuss with anyone else the terms of that agreement. Once James made us aware of that agreement, we knew it would be futile calling them for such a reference.

“Secondly, however, we did make contact with other people in the game that have worked with James, including our own Rowe, Danny, who has been associated with Fylde for many years and was at Chesterfield throughout this period.

“He is someone whose opinion we trust and value, and as we said when we announced James’ appointment, he spoke very highly of him. We obviously also spoke to James on several occasions and met with both him and his wife together.

“With regards to the further article published in this morning’s Mail, we would comment as follows. Firstly, James Rowe has received no ‘personal treatment’, with its obvious insinuations from a female physio.

“The article purports to suggest that there are a bevy of ‘young female physios on internships at the club’, and again, this is totally untrue as we only have one who works on a daily basis under close supervision of the Head of Medical, Gareth Thomas.

“Both these people are more than happy to provide whatever evidence is needed in regard to this matter. As for not informing AFC Fylde staff, and that they were not aware of these allegations against James, we would simply refer the Mail to the AFC Fylde statement on the night of James’ appointment. No-one associated with the club in any way was not aware of the situation.

“The club will be making no further comments on this situation other than to say that we stand fully behind James Rowe and his family at this very difficult time for them.”