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Andy Gray and Richard Keys Aim Sexist Remarks Against Sian Massey, Say Report

Sian Massey, the female assistant referee who impressed many on her second Premier League appearance Saturday, has been the victim of several alleged sexist comments made by Sky Sports presenters Richard Keys and Andy Gray according to Mail On Sunday newspaper.

During Saturday’s match at Wolverhampton Wanderers’s Molineux ground, Massey correctly ruled that Liverpool’s Fernando Torres was onside for the opening goal against Wolves. The correct decision was reinforced by the TV replays.

Meanwhile, the newspaper is reporting that the two presenters believed their microphone were off during the Wolves against Liverpool match, when they were actually on. And here’s what Keys and Gray are reported to have said about Massey:

“Somebody better get down there and explain offside to her,” said Keys.

“Can you believe that? A female linesman. Women don’t know the offside rule,” said Gray.

Keys replied “Course they don’t. I can guarantee you there will be a big one today. Kenny (Dalglish) will go potty. This isn’t the first time, is it? Didn’t we have one before?” And then he added “The game’s gone mad. Did you hear charming [West Ham vice-chairwoman] Karren Brady this morning complaining about sexism? Do me a favour, love.”

When The Mail On Sunday reporter confronted Keys with the transcript, he is reported to have replied “I have no recollection of that. I have no idea what you are talking about. My recollection is that I wished the young lady all the best.” According to the newspaper, the reporter then replied that he had a recording of the conversation to which Keys replied “If you have a tape then you don’t need me to talk to you.” Gray, meanwhile, could not be reached for comment by the paper.

If the comments by Gray and Keys are true, those are deplorable things to say and they as well as Sky Sports should issue an apology immediately. Massey obviously knows the offside decision otherwise she would not be officiating at this high level. The comments by Gray and Keys reek of sexism and an apology should be given to Brady as well.

It seems that the more Keys and Gray open their mouths recently, the more trouble they get into. The two had an embarrassing debate recently on television about Barcelona. Keys let loose some very leading questions which Gray picked up on and questioned whether Barcelona would have a tough time coping against Stoke City and Blackburn Rovers.

Thanks to EPL Talk reader Darren Warren for the news tip.

UPDATE: Sky has issued a statement about the matter which reads “The comments are not acceptable. They were not made on air but we have spoken to Richard and Andy and told them our views and they have apologised and expressed their regret.”

UPDATE: A newly released video of Richard Keys shows the Sky Sports presenter making more sexist remarks. The video can be seen here.

UPDATE: Richard Keys was interviewed Wednesday by TalkSport Radio in the United Kingdom where he explained his side of the story. Listen to that interview now.

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  1. cnut

    March 6, 2012 at 6:49 am

    Women belong in the kitchen and not on the pitch.

  2. Michele Castorina

    January 29, 2011 at 5:39 am

    Sian Massey must have trained hard to be where she is now, and because of that, the comments from Keys and Gray are even more silly than usual. Lets take everything with a pinch of salt and move on. I am sorry for the two guys, because their behaviour wasn`t at all malicious. An advice to Karren Brady is to get out of football all togrther.

  3. john

    January 28, 2011 at 7:40 pm

    trying not to be sexist ,, but in football is a lads game all young boys play it an love it ,, girls dont like it and generally when they get older despise it ! of course there are girls who love it but there always going to be a massive minority in taking part ! that said the woman didnt make a wrong decision and fair play to her shes capable but political correctness has gone way too far ! clearly men and women arent the same and are not going to be equal at absolutly everything ! keys took it too far but i make woman jokes like that ,, and about women being in the kitchen and making me sandwhihces all the time with friends who are girls ! so keys was a bit harsh as the woman linesman didnt make a wrong decision but at the same time feminism is ruining life !

  4. Guglo

    January 28, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    Seriously, these jokers are being paid millions to comment on Sports. Instead they use this occasion to make uncalled for and sexist remarks. Yes, these type of sexist remarks are also heard in bars etc BUT no one in the bar is being paid millions to comment on a game. Do you pay SkyTV (and the salaries of these jokers) to hear sexist remarks – I personally want a good commentary on the game. Clearly these jokers are not up to that – and we pay them in the millions to make sexist remarks.

  5. george davidson

    January 27, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    ironic considering sky uses attractive females to target male viewers

  6. Kazza

    January 26, 2011 at 6:12 am

    Everyone is entitled to their opinion and I am sure there were many sighs & groans when it was known that a “woman” was the fourth official and they would have exactly the same views as those two dickheads – the point is they made a judgement purely because of her sex, they judged her before she even had the chance to wave her flag. Considering the amount of bad decisions/wrong calls made by referee’s and officials recently (and all of them being made by men), their comments were unnecessary.

    I do agree, however that I am uncomfortable at the thought of not being allowed an opinion and where it has come to a point where everyone is walking on eggshells afraid to say what they really think and be constantly on guard. However, their comments were nasty and uncalled for.

    At least Keys had the decency to apologise but I doubt we will hear anything from Gray.

    Can’t believe the amount of sexist comments that have been thrown up here though – just goes to show that some people will never move with the times.

    • AMANDA

      January 26, 2011 at 1:02 pm


  7. online fitness marketing

    January 26, 2011 at 3:55 am

    Also Andy Gray was fired for a combination of things. He got a warning yesterday for his comments regarding Massey, but then the sack today when it came out that he’d made some inappropriate comments to Charlotte Jackson (a fellow Sky Sports presenter) back in December. That video is on YouTube as well.

  8. Faraad

    January 26, 2011 at 3:16 am

    You Go Massey, dont let small comments affect what you are QUALIFIED to do. If there was anyone better to do the job, they would have used them. Seeing as though you have the right experience needed, you were chosen above all other “men”. You called a great game, and you will have my vote any day to be the referee or assistant…

  9. Dee

    January 25, 2011 at 10:47 pm

    Oh dear, it seems you can’t edit your comments. In my typing fury, I’ve made a few typographicals. XD

    They HAVE ovaries, not balls
    Having ovaries apparently makes WOMEN unable to officiate in a game
    while you blokes are monopolising the sporting WORLD

    My apologies

  10. Dee

    January 25, 2011 at 10:44 pm

    Since when has soccer only allowed to be a “mens game”? I wasn’t aware that it was a rule of law? Oh that’s right. The game of soccer is stil populated by a bunch of knuckledragging Neanderthals that think women should be at home, barefoot and pregnant, or servicing their every need. Shall we all get with it, and recognise that PEOPLE are appointed based on ability, not how much testosterone is in their system? I hate to inform some of you sexist so and sos but WOMEN actually watch sport too! SHOCK. And are SHOCK, actually GOOD at it. Australia’s women’s cricket team has been one of the most successful sporting teams ever, and do they get recognised? NO. Because they ovaries, not balls, and somehow that makes them not as good, and having ovaries apparently makes them unable to officiate in a game, it seems. You don’t need balls to rule on sporting decisions, and those same balls make mistakes as well. And realise this: While you blokes are monopolising the sporting, we women are the ones who are LETTING you watch it and participate in it, but be aware – we’re catching up and we’ll all be on a level playing field before you know it. Be afraid.

  11. Mark

    January 25, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    Given most sports refuse to let men and women play together – even though there’s no real physical reason for a lot of them – means I can’t really be surprised by any of this. YAWN.

  12. Frank

    January 25, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    Sad day that Gray has left sky. I know that everyone seems to be happy about this, but I dont really see the problem. They were only talking about the referees assistant off air and lets face it, they were just saying what all the men were thinking. She did well to let the Torres goal stand but then made a complete blunder a few minutes later with Torres and Maxi. She’s probably a really good assistant but its going to be tough to be treated equally in the football world. Also she has said that she withdrew from the Crewe match as she doesnt want to be the centre of attention. Who is she fooling, she’s a WOMAN of course she’s gonna be the centre of attention. See you on ITV Andy.

    • brn442

      January 25, 2011 at 6:38 pm

      Frank, all men aren’t as ignorant as your sad post suggests. Off air my arse; so, should Ron Atkinson get his job back then?

      • Frank

        January 26, 2011 at 6:06 am

        Why not, Ron is always good for the brn442, no need to get so animated, everybody is entitled to their opinion and i just feel that the majority of men feel the same way. It’s not like they said it live for everybody to hear, and how come it got leaked? obviously somebody wanted it leaked. I feel sorry for them as it was meant to be a private thing. You telling me that you’ve never had a private slagging off chat with somebody? Of course you wouldnt want it to be heard. But hey, that’s just my opinion:-)

        • Joe

          January 26, 2011 at 4:42 pm

          When you take a job as a professional media personality, don’t you think you should be smart enough to know that nothing you say or do while you’re at work is private? The sheer arrogance and stupidity to think that that sort of talk should happen at the work place is what got them fired. Sky would’ve looked awful to keep them.

  13. AMANDA

    January 25, 2011 at 4:46 pm


    • Mandingo

      January 25, 2011 at 6:21 pm

      MORON. LOL, LOL, LOL !!

  14. tonyspeed

    January 25, 2011 at 3:18 pm

    I think it will be pretty hard for the american populace to understand why such comments were made as in america soccer is primarily taken seriously by women. But in almost every country in the world, football has been seen as a men’s sport, and the one-liner “women don’t know the offside rule” is an old addage that many women in other countries will readily agree with. Seen from this perspective, firing the two blokes for personal views that are widely held in most countries is a bit harsh. But considering how seriously European law takes crimes of prejudice, it was justified.

  15. Katherine

    January 25, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    I think the person or persons who leaked this are pretty spiteful. It was a ‘private’ conversation. Then again, they should have known that they could be overheard, so they have been proven to be pretty stupid on two counts.

    I’m not really bothered by what they said because I never had any time for them anyway; it’s usually only stupid people who hold views like this and I tend not to get upset by stupid people.

    Now that it is ‘out there’, they should be sacked and so should the spiteful person who leaked this.

    • keebz

      January 31, 2011 at 1:53 pm

      Well said Katherine…this is one opinion I DO agree with 100%.

  16. AMANDA

    January 25, 2011 at 12:25 pm


  17. bob

    January 25, 2011 at 12:22 pm

    good sack em both about time clueless idiots football morons

  18. Fred

    January 25, 2011 at 8:07 am

    Thank you for proving my point Amanda, “CAPS CAPS CAPS CAPS” “IM SO ANGRY GRRR” lol

  19. AMANDA

    January 25, 2011 at 8:05 am


  20. Fred

    January 25, 2011 at 8:01 am

    OMG get some perspective! This is the biggest NON-Story i have seen in a while! This kind of story gives all feminists the chance to rant and rave about a stupid stereotype that was said tongue in cheek! Get over yourselves!

    Football = Mens
    Netball = Womens

    Deal with it!

  21. AMANDA

    January 25, 2011 at 7:58 am


  22. Carl

    January 25, 2011 at 7:51 am

    I personally think Mens and Womens football should be kept separate, not because women can’t officiate at the highest level, i just don’t want to go down the road of a unisex football league one day….It would ruin the sport in my opinion

    • Dave C

      January 25, 2011 at 1:14 pm

      Really dumb…how would having female officials lead down a slippery path to a unisex football league? Referee’s have been older, slightly out of shape guys for years (compared to the players) but it hasn’t led to the introduction of old chubby guys in to any EPL squads. Likewise, are you fearful that having young kids act as mascots might one day lead to an adult-child mixed league??

  23. Dixon

    January 24, 2011 at 8:56 pm

    I cant help but notice that people who thing this is an over-reaction seem in general to have well thought out structured arguments that support that they are actually trying to say whilst the majority, and not all i have read some stuff that has made me think hmm good point, but the majority of people complaining have basically said this”ARRGH SKY ARGH ANDY GREY BAD ARGH SACK HIM CAUSE ERRR I WANT TO BE ANGRY AT SOMETHING THAT DOESNT AFFECT ME ARRR”

  24. AMANDA

    January 24, 2011 at 7:56 pm


  25. adam

    January 24, 2011 at 7:24 pm

    haha legends

  26. kelvin

    January 24, 2011 at 5:25 pm

    sack both andy gray and richard keys, they always get on my nerves anyway. they are both morons who make millions of pounds of wages.
    mt grand would do a better job than them asses

  27. kev

    January 24, 2011 at 4:53 pm

    what a load of crap the best two presenters around they make sky football what it is today pc gone mad

  28. Dave C

    January 24, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    Also, one more thing….do you think Fernando Torres asked her for any advice on how to do his hair?

  29. Dave C

    January 24, 2011 at 3:20 pm

    In the words of Nigel Tufnel: “Sexist? Well what’s wrong with being sexy?”

    But seriously, I think people have got their knickers in a twist over this. It was a slightly off-colour joke, essentially made in private, about a well-worn cliche about women not grasping the offside rule.

    I don’t think it’s anything like the situation with Ron Atkinson’s racist comments about Marcel Desailly. It’s not possible to make “light-hearted” jokes out of racist stereotypes, because even the most seemingly innocent fun-poke at black people’s rhythm or love-lives, or jewish people’s fiscal prudence harks back to the kinds of viewpoints that led to real hardship, violence, discrimination and genocide. On the other hand, I think sexist stereotypes are not nearly as offensive, and can be used in a lighter way, because no women have ever actually been persecuted for not knowing the off-side rule.

    Would anyone have taken offense if a female commentator had made a light hearted jibe about a male referee, perhaps saying “I don’t know how he can write down names in his book, AND keep track of time, AND remember where he left his whistle, because men aren’t as good at multi-tasking?” It’s equally stereotypical, but I can’t imagine anyone taking any real offense at that.

  30. Dan

    January 24, 2011 at 2:47 pm

    The sooner they get that pair off our screens the better, especially Andy Gray!!! Time and time again we have to put up with his state the obvious analysis and he shouldve done this and that. If he was so good why didnt he take the Everton job when it was offered????

    Ron Atkinson paid with his job and the same should be done here.

  31. Oatcake

    January 24, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    The worlds gone mad, yes they were wrong but aren’t we still entitled to our own opinions. They both believed the microphones were off, so it was just a conversation between 2 colleagues therefore whether right or wrong shouldn’t be for the public domain. If they get sacked for this I for one will be cancelling my skysports subscription and I urge everyone else to do the same, let’s get some common sense back into this world. They have both apologised and that should be enough !!!!


    January 24, 2011 at 12:52 pm


  33. elaine watson

    January 24, 2011 at 11:39 am

    I cant believe the comments made by these two. I had honestly always thought AG to be sound and liked his commentary, thought he was not narrow minded however so am genuinely shocked. RK on the other hand, a bumbling baffoon who is overpaid and very stupid….The two of them surely know how a mic works dont they? Thumbs down to them both. My only fear however now is if they go then we will see more of the dreary jamie redknapp who wouldnt know hard work if it hit him in the face….

  34. Chris Watson

    January 24, 2011 at 11:33 am

    Having their mic’s on was cearly a mistake, anyone can make a mistake.! You ave called Andy Gray “Adams” in your last paragraph. If they share an opinion the good for them! Just make sure your mic is off.

  35. Devon

    January 24, 2011 at 11:21 am

    These two idiots now think they are bigger than the beautiful game. Good people have been sacked for less. Time for new blood, sack the pair of them

  36. Duckwrangler

    January 24, 2011 at 9:55 am

    I doubt that they will be dismissed completely. However, you can expect that they will play no part in any SKY SPORTS games where there are female referees or assistants.

  37. Lbarr

    January 24, 2011 at 8:42 am

    That is a total disgrace as a female football fan I find those comments disgusting!! She did a fantastic job and made the biggest call of the game correctly!!

  38. sandra

    January 24, 2011 at 6:53 am

    I couldn’t beleive how sexist and prejudiced Andy Gray and Richard Keys were!
    They should be kicked out of Sky Sports for those offensive comments.
    They really do think they are more important than our football and Sky TV!
    I have had enough of Andy Gray commentating on our football matches.
    If they are going to apologise to the referees assistant, Sian Massey, then they ought to do it before the Chelsea match tonight in front of the viewers.

  39. Laura

    January 24, 2011 at 6:45 am

    As a female sports fan and woman working in a male dominated field can I just say that it’s a genuine breath of fresh air to read here that so many men see how out of line and out of date Gray and Keys have been. Thank you for respecting a human being’s ability to do a job well rather than focusing on a few irrelevant body parts.

    To those of you who in even just some respect agree with Gray and Keys, well …. let’s just say looking so scared and threatened is rather ‘unmanly’ and leave it at that shall we?

    • Earl Reed

      January 24, 2011 at 8:04 am

      It takes a lot of guts for a woman to throw herself into the spotlight, knowing full well that she eventually will be made scapegoat by a bunch of cretins…whether it be fans, players, or commentators.

      The thing is, every official is going to make mistakes. She made one later on in the match, very clearly. In fact, I’d bet the furor over her first call influenced that one. I’ll bet that she second-guessed her own call after the goal was scored. She has no way of definitively knowing in that instant, and it’s a split-second decision.

      The thing that I’ve come to like about soccer officials…they seem to be a lot more humble than American officials. Baseball umpires are notoriously combative and cavalier. NFL officials are arbitrary and overly influential in the game.

  40. sean

    January 24, 2011 at 4:24 am

    Sky have form for this – they still employ hoddle after his disability outburst. Maybe we havnt heard the last of this and they will go. Which would be great – AG has always been over rated in my opinion.

  41. Leroy

    January 24, 2011 at 4:20 am

    Anyone who thinks a woman can’t officiate a football game is, quite frankly, an idiot. If a man is running the line and makes a mistake – which happens often, let’s face it – gender isn’t mentioned. Although she did make a mistake with Torres later on, that call for Liverpool’s first goal was not only spot-on, but a very difficult one to make. She did a really good job and I hope she gets lots more chances because her performance was as good as any bloke on the line’s last weekend. Plus, she’s intrinsically under more pressure than a man in the same position because of the amount of idiots that will use her sex as a reason to question her ability to run the line.

    Also, did anyone notice how the players’ reactions to her calls were different? Less of the ridiculous and puerile gurning in the face of the lino and a lot more respect and professionalism. Football is a hypocritical game isn’t it; you should be polite to ladies but they are not able to understand the offside rule. Ridiculous!

  42. GazzaOI

    January 24, 2011 at 3:24 am

    Female officials look ridiculous refereeing a male football match. They should stick to the female game. I agree with the commentator who said the game has gone mad. PC madness. What next? Are we gonna have mixed gender teams to “maker things fairer”?

  43. Sioniboi

    January 24, 2011 at 3:23 am

    I’m glad I haven’t wasted my money on Sky and listen to those incompetent monkeys. They always talk out of their self-important ar*es. Give me the BBC anyday! Save your money…

  44. Tony

    January 24, 2011 at 3:18 am

    Sky TV needs to grow some balls and get rid of these two.

    Ron Atkinson was ousted from ITV over a racist comment made when he thought the microphones were off.

    Although not racist its sexist and these two should get the same fate not just told to make a grovelling apology and all will be forgotten.

    They are both past their “sell by date” now anyway and time for Sky to bring in some younger presenters.

  45. Ryan Sutton

    January 24, 2011 at 3:10 am

    Although she did make a howler of a decision later in the game when Torres shot at nr post which was saved by Hennessey, She ruled it offside but he had 4 defenders in front of him ??? Anyone>???

  46. lawrence buckler

    January 24, 2011 at 3:09 am

    Could this be why the rest of the footballing world sneer at English football and all it stands for. Much as I dislike what fifa did over the selection of the world cup venues, commentating like this does nothing to endeer us to the rest of the world.

    • Dave C

      January 24, 2011 at 3:02 pm

      Yeah you’re right, the rest of the world sneer at English football.

      In Italy, players display fascist/neo-nazi tendencies and fans wave anti-semetic banners. In Spain, Russia and Eastern Europe, fans direct monkey noises at black players. In some middle-easter countries it’s illegal for women to even attend games. China prohibits pick-up games because spontaneous groups of people may give rise to political dissent. South and Central American teams hurl urine-filled water baloons at players and opposing fans.

      But England is “sneered at” because broadcasters make mildly off-colour jokes in private conversation…sure.

  47. Rich

    January 24, 2011 at 1:00 am

    I can’t believe I’m posting re: this story but why on earth is everyone so up in arms about it!? Sexism!? My word, it was a joke. Get over it! I would find it hard to believe if the blokes sticking it to Keys and Gray have never made a joke about a woman or even laughed at a woman joke. Come on now. They poked fun because it’s not very often you see a woman running up and down the lines. A sexist view from them would have to been to say something like “a woman has no place in a man’s game. She’ll never be any good and we want her out.” I think they do a good job presenting the footie and shouldn’t be fired. They should apologise for making this bad humoured joke and admit that she wouldn’t be there if she didn’t know her stuff and just move on!

  48. Prayuj shakya

    January 23, 2011 at 10:40 pm

    What a ??? I didn’t expect that from andy gray….what a great player he was and a great football commentator…..but anyway these conversation don’t mean that they really mean it…or do they? can’t trust the brits

  49. John Tring

    January 23, 2011 at 10:38 pm

    I may be in a minority here but may be someone can tell me why we need a female official in the 1st place? Nothing sexist here, just reality. RK and AG may have thought aloud and wrongly so but someone trying to be politically correct by fielding female official(s) ? What next? Men must have menses and must bear child in the name of equality? pls keep things in perspective.

    • Duke

      January 24, 2011 at 12:45 am

      Maybe the “female official” is the best of a group of young referees, and has earned herself a spot as an assistant in the top flight. Perhaps she’s even better at her job than some – gasp! – male officials. Nah, that couldn’t be the reason, could it?

      One thing is for sure: This topic has really flushed out all the morons who frequent this site.

    • x

      January 24, 2011 at 12:57 am

      Not trying to be sexist? You are, asshole. its the 21st century. I think you and keys and gary are all behind the times. I think you’re all just threatened. She clearly would not be reffing a game if people thought she was incompetent. You’re just as bad as they are. Saying “nothing sexist here” does not make it not sexist. Keeping things in perspective: you are an unintelligent person who needs to catch up on the times and realize a whole bunch of women could do things better than you.

  50. steve-m

    January 23, 2011 at 9:53 pm

    It seems everyone is very quick to jump on the bandwagon here, but ive not heard the lady in question say anything on the matter? She probably couldnt care less. If she comes out demanding an apology she’ll only make a fool out of herself, male officials dont go crying to the press when a pundit says something about them, so a woman doing it wouldnt do her or women in sport any favours. The moment they demand special treatment is usually when they talk themselves out of a job. And ive been in enough companies to know this. If Massey was the type to be hurt and get in a fit over a joke then she wouldnt of got to this level in her career, yet the women of the world seem very keen to jump in the way and protect her on her behalf when she isnt asking to be protected.

    It seems nobody on TV is allowed an opinion anymore, personally i dont care what these two think, but it does seem the keyboard warriors wont be happy until everybody is removed from TV and replaced with one solitary mixed race, a-political, opinion-free transexual.

    And what a day that’ll be.

    • brn442

      January 23, 2011 at 10:45 pm

      Steve-m. I would have criticized your post if it had followed some sort of logic or simply made sense; it painfully does neither..

      • Dave C

        January 24, 2011 at 3:07 pm

        It made pretty good sense. Maybe not perfectly composed, and I don’t necessarily agree entirely with the logic (that it’s not offensive unless the woman at the receiving end of it has expressed her offense), but I think it’s a bit facetious to say it doesn’t make sense or show any logic.

  51. James84

    January 23, 2011 at 9:46 pm

    I think this story is a bit of a fuss about nothing. Its only been made into a big story because Sian Massey is a female assistant, to those posting in here who say “her gender shouldnt be mentioned”, well im sorry, the fact she is female is whats made this story become a story in the first place. Im sure the likes of Gray and Keys have said unfavourable things about men off the record which dont get picked up on. If it was a male assistant and Gray said something like “oh god not him again, useless idiot” or something, nobody wouldve cared. Nobody said Keys should be sacked for his comments about Walcott, which was far harsher than what he allegedly said about Massey, but Walcott is a bloke, so nobody cares.

    I think this encapsulates an ongoing theme in society now, in a free country theres a hell of alot of things we’re not allowed to say isnt there? And we go and lecture the Chinese? Dear god. Sexism against men from women is rife, yet thats totally acceptable. Anti-men jokes and comments from women go completely unpunished, women believe sexism only exists against themselves. If we’re all so interested in what people on TV think then its a clear sign that we dont have enough to do with our lives. Am i supposed to be judging Keys on everything some journalist digs up? How about we head round his house and see if he has some music in his CD collection which i dont like, and i’ll complain about that too. For goodness sake.

    Women can say whatever they like about men and get away with it, that in itself is sexist. To put Massey up on a pedestal because she got a decision right, when nobody does it for male refs, is also sexist. To over-promote her purely because she’s a woman is sexist also. And if it was a woman caught “off the record” saying a joke about a man, im pretty sure nobody would care, women would que up going “you’re right sister!” and all the other hypocritical nonsense which comes out of their mouths.

    Btw, im a Liverpool fan and i didnt even notice Massey until Sky zoomed in on her in the 54th minute LOL. And in fairness to her, she’s just doing her job, she’s not made a big song and dance about how she’s a woman in a mans job, yet the media have seen fit to do it on her behalf.

    • Earl Reed

      January 23, 2011 at 10:31 pm

      I will guarantee you that most everyone in that stadium knew that there was a female assistant. And as soon as an iffy call was going to come her way, the crowd was going to get all over her.

      It’s not even close to what a male assistant would go through, he would at least be considered innocent until proven incompetent. Massey was going to be considered a dolt by that crowd regardless of the play. Look at it, it was a perfectly legitimate play. Even ESPN’s announcers had to point out that she was a female assistant, as if to brace the viewers that, “She’s a female, she probably got it wrong.”

      So no, I don’t think it’s out of the question for women to take exception to this kind of behavior.

    • Kraex

      January 24, 2011 at 2:51 pm

      Keys didn’t make his comments about Walcott simply because he was black. Male refs do get stick, but not simply because they’re male. If this woman had gone out and had a howler, she would have deserved it. Perhaps even next time she showed up at a ground. But to judge her an idiot before she takes the field (and not her first match) is unacceptable.

      Whatever the outcome in this incident, I think it’s adequately displayed that the UK has a long way to go in terms of gender equality. Comparing the comments of paid commentators on the job to a pub conversation is simply not accurate.

    • peter

      January 26, 2011 at 4:20 pm

      you want to grow up mate. ladies have the rite to officiate, if they are qualified. did you ever change yr kids nappies. did you help wen she needed washin up. either shut up mate or grow up. cos i did it all. wash nappies, people like you make me sick. you spend 5 mins in the bedroom makin her pregnant then walk away. you disgust me. the lady, requires respect. mor than wot you can go on bout. peter, yes i did everythin for my wife ands helped her 24 hours. you should b ashamed of yrself.

    • Joe

      January 26, 2011 at 4:33 pm

      Here’s the problem: We have actual evidence of not just one, but a pattern of sexist remarks coming from Mr. Gray and Mr. Keys. What you have is nonsense conjecture about “an ongoing theme in society” and “other hypocritical nonsense which comes out of their mouths.”

      Evidence wins.

  52. keith

    January 23, 2011 at 8:35 pm

    Sian Massey deserves a public apology from Richard Murdoch and Sky.
    Andy Gray and Richard Keys should be sacked not just for this but for all the other gaffes. They have not learn from their previous mistakes. They are a liability to Sky.

  53. Jib Phillips

    January 23, 2011 at 8:09 pm

    Spineless Sky. Why can’t you stand up. like the BBC did with Ron Atkinson? Your token slap-on-wrist shows what you think of female football fans… and also what you think of us male football fans who have enough brain cells to rub together.. unlike your commentator jokers (but not in a good way)

  54. Earl Reed

    January 23, 2011 at 7:45 pm

    While I despise and think the comments made by these two are stupid, is this what the world comes down to? Are we going to secretly record every person on this planet in order to use their off-the-record comments against them? I mean we can witch hunt just about anybody we want. Did they say this live on air? Heck no.

    If you’re going to do this, then you need to start doing it for every commentator, every actor or actress, every person in the world. Any one of us who has a negative thing to say or think about anybody else should be shitcanned based on personal comments. That’s our world, maybe there’ll be one person left to tell us about the game.

    • Joe

      January 23, 2011 at 8:06 pm

      We can certainly have qualms about the way this information was obtained, but the fact remains that it was obtained. These two men harbor views that are completely backwards and have no place in modern sports. To keep them at this point would condone the attitudes they expressed.

    • Alex

      January 23, 2011 at 8:48 pm

      According to the article, they had their conversation in front of their microphones, apparently believing the microphones were off when that was not the case.
      I would hardly call that being secretly recorded. It wasn’t like someone was hiding in their vicinity with a tape recorder!

      • Earl Reed

        January 23, 2011 at 9:24 pm

        The clip didn’t air. So somehow, someone recorded this raw audio feed. It was either a secretive recording, or it was an official dub that was lifted by an employee of Sky who wanted to give the tape to a reporter to expose their views.

        They are stupid to think that they can say stuff in front of microphones and not have it come back to bite them.

        • Dave C

          January 24, 2011 at 2:47 pm

          I agree with Earl on this – the clip didn’t air. So whether the microphones were switched on (but not actually being broadcast) or off, it was still essentially a private conversation. I don’t care if Richard Keys and Andy Gray are paragons of virtue, or if they are sexist, satanist klansmen in their downtime (since it is unknowable and none of our business), as long as they do a good job of what they are supposed to do.

          To say they should be fired for “harboring views that are completely backwards and have no place in modern sports” is kind of ridiculous.

  55. steve

    January 23, 2011 at 6:55 pm

    Rodney was sacked for comments about the tsunami, Atkinson’s comments which were racist were off-air and HE was sacked. Any chance of Sky Sports doing the right thing?

  56. tet

    January 23, 2011 at 5:09 pm

    Bout time get rid of Andy Gray, twat and Richard Keys as well, Sky has poisoned the game, the coverage is good but these two are out of time and obsolete, Adrian Chiles is miles better as are Mile Ingam on Radio 5 and Simon Brotherton. Sian Massey had a great game on Saturday getting the offside right for Liverpool’s first game, takes real guts to run the line, good for her. Sack these two, every time I see my brother in law he days “Andy Gray – tosser” to which I reply “no, big tosser”

  57. comfortablynumb1975x

    January 23, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    Andy Gray & Richard Keys Sexist Rant – Audio *HOT*

    Listen, laugh, rate & comment.


  58. Brian

    January 23, 2011 at 3:59 pm

    Read that first sentence and was rather surprised – “sophomoric” is an insult, not a description of being second in a series. I know, internet grammar nitpicker, lowest form of life, etc etc.

    • The Gaffer

      January 23, 2011 at 4:09 pm

      Brian, that wasn’t the intent. Good point though. “Sophomoric performance” can be construed as an insult, so I changed it to ‘second appearance’ to make sure there’s no confusion.

      The Gaffer

    • PC

      January 24, 2011 at 11:07 am

      Is there any humor left in our country? Do any of us pass the dinner table test according to Baroness Warsi? Men cant multi task and woman dont understand the off side rule! OK thats stereo typical. But sometimes its funny! I didnt laugh out loud at the comments but they could be bloke talk between two pals! Any body left that listens to a conversation any night in a pub? Or is that banned now as well! These comments were not made on air and give them the benefit of the doubt. I am not sure they would in their private lives be trying to be sexist. I get called a Jock all the time and we in Scotland characterized for being mean and drunk all the time! It might be true of some but the majority. Lets not get too precious and save our anger for more meaningful problems in society.

      • Stephen Marsh

        February 13, 2011 at 6:26 am

        PC, you are a dinosaur. To judge a person on their gender in the workplace is against the law. Furthermore it is illogical and stupid. The same argument you use can be used to support Big Ron Atkinson’s N***** rant and WAS used by people just like you who say “it’s political correctness gone mad!!”. Well, grow up and read the European Convention on Human Rights. It’s got lots of big words in it, so you’ll need a dictionary, but to summarise, everyone is born with a right to dignity and not even you can take that away…..

  59. JB

    January 23, 2011 at 2:13 pm

    They should sack both of these incompetent sexist twats, but I doubt it will happen!

  60. Cricketlover

    January 23, 2011 at 1:56 pm

    If this had been done in this country both of these men would have been fired. However, in England sexism and racism goes unpunished all too often.

    • Dave C

      January 24, 2011 at 2:40 pm

      in England sexism and racism goes unpunished all too often

      You think so? From my personal experience, I find that British people tend to go to great (sometimes ridiculous) lengths to avoid potentially offending anyone in any way.

      For example, my mum works in a clinic where at one time, they only had one non-white member of staff. Aside from being pretty distinctive simply by the virtue of being a minority, he also had a turban and a beard. I think he was a Pakistani Muslim, but I may be wrong about both of those facts (although that’s not key to the story).

      The point is, patients would come in and ask for him. They couldn’t remember his name (or perhaps they were afraid to mispronounce it out of fear of offending someone). So they would try and describe the guy they were looking for. Now obviously the simplest way to describe him would be “the Asian/Pakistani doctor”. But they never did that, because they were afraid that maybe he was Bangladeshi or Indian or something, and calling him Pakistani might offend him. Or maybe they thought that even if he was Pakistani, referring to him as the Pakistani doctor might offend someone.

      So they could describe him as “the guy with the turban”…but no, they were afraid to use that description too. Perhaps they were unsure if that was the correct term for his head-dress. Or if even mentioning a turban was some sort of taboo.

      So instead, they’d describe him as “the guy with glasses…he’s about 5’9. Dark hair…medium build….oh yeah he has a beard too….” i.e. they’d play this ridiculous real-life version of “guess who” until my mum could piece together who they were talking about, out of fear of any one possibly interpreting them as racist.

      • Stephen Marsh

        February 13, 2011 at 6:16 am

        Dave, as you say you are only speaking personally, but you clearly don’t have any knowledge or experience of being on the receiving end of racism in this country, which is alive and well. Ask Stephen Lawrence’s parents (just one example, I can give you thousands more). Racism may appear non-existent to you, but that is because you are white and have not tried to understand the issue beyond your irritation with what you regard as political correctness at best, or fabrication at worst. You need to educate yourself before going public with your views or you will merely be perceived as ignorant. Muslims don’t wear turbans and you can describe someone as Asian with no fear of offence (as the UK census shows) who is from India, Bangladesh, China, Pakistan and so on. This is because the continent they are from is called Asia. There are some Irish/British names that people are sometimes unaware of how to pronounce such as St.John, Siobhan and Grainne, that can also cause some discomfort to the unsure. But no, for you it’s all about the climate of fear that indigenous British people have to live in these days. No recognition of any existence of racism at all, just all paranoia by the immigrants….

  61. brn442

    January 23, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    As said by Mr. Keys “It’s not the first time is it? – didn’t we have ONE before?” “One”?

    To objectify Sian Massey or any human with a word reserved to describe simple possessions – “one”, says it all.

    Whether it’s Gray, Mc Manamann, et al, nothing said by ex-jocks, however disappointing; surprises me but I would’ve expected better from Mr. Keys. Absolutely shocking.

    • Dave C

      January 24, 2011 at 2:26 pm

      I think you’re being way over-sensitive by objecting to the use of the word “one” meaning a woman. The word isn’t just used for posessions, it’s used to describe “one” of anything – one woman, one house, one small step, etc etc. It’s like being offended at referring to a married couple as a “couple”, since I guess that de-humanizes them too.

      • VSVS

        January 26, 2011 at 3:45 pm

        Actually no, the use of the word “one” is shockingly dismissive and really does say it all in terms of their attitudes.

        Imagine referring to a black person as being “one of them” and it’s quite clearly singling them out.

        There is no denying the tone of what the said so I don’t know why people are bothering to defend them.

  62. Dave

    January 23, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Ed: I think you mean “reeks of sexism”, not “wreaks”.

  63. Simon Burke

    January 23, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Not Keys first time either….. this was him slagging off Walcott.
    Never learns does he?

  64. David G

    January 23, 2011 at 11:20 am

    From a Rupert Murdoch owned company it’s unsurprising.

  65. Chris

    January 23, 2011 at 11:12 am

    Oh dear, how pathetic Gray and Keys are. These sexist idiots are clearly struggling to understand the offside rule themselves and I agree with the suggestions of others, perhaps Ms Massey should explain the rule to them, as their small minds are finding it difficult to process it. Also moaning about Karren Brady talking about sexism as if it’s not an issue whilst proving they themselves have disgraceful sexist attitudes? Well done boys.

    • Oohahhpaulmcgrath

      January 24, 2011 at 11:32 am

      As much as I dislike Gray and keys I have to agree with their comments. Ok she made good call but can u imagine abuse she would get if she got decision wrong. Also the men refs and ass get criticised big time by gray and keys but no one mentions that. Need to keep women out of mens sport its just wrong and ruins it. They only said what most men think anyway. All of my friends male and female thought a female refs assisstant shouldnt be doing job in mans game. A lot of the sky presenters are woman of ex footballers who only got the job because of who they are related to. That is not fair they should be given priority over good male presenters just coz sky want to be seen as politically correct and this is sexist as well. Iv no problem with women in womens sports such as womens tennis where at least they have played tennis at a high level.

      • PeterB

        January 24, 2011 at 1:17 pm

        I think that Massey wouldn’t have a problem with receiving criticism for a bad call – this is EPL and she’s playing in the big leagues now and no doubt this comes with the territory. I know of no physical impediment a woman would have in being an assistant referree, or even a head referree. Can you name one? Men coach and referree women’s big league basketball, soccer, etc. – there is no sex barrier to that, none needs exist going in the opposite direction either. Kudos to EPL for not letting her sex get in the way of giving her a match; her performance would appear to support giving her another opportunity.

        • FootyTech

          January 24, 2011 at 5:53 pm

          Oohahhpaulmcgrath … boy have you got it so wrong. Crawl back into your cave troglodyte. Go and wash the dishes while the women get the job done properly. And while you’re at it, replace the morons on Sky with some good female presenters!

          • peter

            January 25, 2011 at 8:07 pm


            youve got it spot on. sack the 2 of them. the lady was qualified to do the job, and she was right. these men never learn to keep their comments to themselves. even the film of the 2 of them with the presenter. they shud grow up. and both apologise, i dont like footy and im a man, whose girlfriend also hates footy. but the point being, she was qualified to do the job, better than they were. sack the both of them. we are supposed to be living a world of equality. so he earned 1.7 mill, far too much.

      • Baz

        January 25, 2011 at 2:54 am


  66. Steve

    January 23, 2011 at 10:30 am

    The funniest part of this is he was onside, no question. The players at the top of the pitch were trying to trap and Zubar was sitting back which allowed the onside.

    Nice work, gentlemen…

  67. Nick

    January 23, 2011 at 9:00 am

    Times like this I’m actually happy to watch in the US, Darke and Macca were both complimentary of the job she did in her first big televised game, as for the other ref’s assistant, they weren’t quite as kind to how he was doing 😀

    • Eddie

      January 23, 2011 at 2:28 pm

      Nick beat me too it, Drake and Macca commentated the exact opposite. They were quick to praise her for the decision and very accepting of her role. Quite a contrast to Keys and Gray.

      • The Gaffer

        January 23, 2011 at 2:45 pm

        I have a feeling that Fox Soccer Channel won’t be bringing Richard Keys or Andy Gray back in 2014 to front their World Cup coverage. Same applies to ESPN who hired Gray to commentate the 2008 Euros.

        The Gaffer

      • Dave C

        January 24, 2011 at 2:19 pm

        On the previous post about Sian Massey, a LOT of people said that McManaman had said some disparaging things on air (although not as obviously sexist in their nature as Keys & Gray).

  68. Dave

    January 23, 2011 at 8:52 am

    “Massey correctly ruled that Liverpool’s Fernando Torres was onside for the opening goal against Wolves.”

    Torres was clearly onside. The question was over Meireles – who was onside too, but marginally. It was an excellent decision by Massey.

    • RedNProud

      January 23, 2011 at 10:19 am

      I don’t get this “marginally” thing the player is either onside or offside. Sian had a great game and we can only hope that we start to see more referee assistant’s of her quality coming through the system.

      I would love to see the two morons, Grat and Keys, run the line on live TV and have Sian comment on thier performance.

      • RedNProud

        January 23, 2011 at 10:24 am

        Sorry, it should read

        I would love to see the two morons, Gray and Keys, run the line on live TV and have Sian comment on thier performance.

        PS. Sky is unusually quiet on the subject

  69. Terry

    January 23, 2011 at 8:29 am

    Sian Massey obviously knows the offside rule better than those morons Gray and Keys. Maybe the FA should ask Massey to explain the offside rule to those two morons in the hope that maybe the next time they commentate they won’t embarass themselves by saying something stupid about the offside rule.

  70. Daftburger

    January 23, 2011 at 5:48 am

    Taylor? Do you mean Atkinson?

    Key’s and Gray think they are part of the reason, what am I saying part of the reason, they probably believe they are the main reason for the success of the Premier League. If you count success as destroying 90% of teams chances of ever winning it then carry on.

    Sky Sports is an old boys club of ex players who have never tried or if they have been able to cut it in management and much like an opposition government can snipe from the sidelines with the knowledge they’ll never have to back up their theories.

    Time for both to go and shake up the whole lot of them! This is an ideal reason but don’t hold your breath.

    P.S. She is not a female lineswoman she is a referees assistant, no mention of gender needed.

  71. Drew

    January 23, 2011 at 4:33 am

    The unfortunate thing is most people probably had the same views as those two morons at the time and even today. Andy Gray is traditionally know for being clueless in his announcing, much like John Madden in America. Sky pays him a ton of money for his ignorant views on football, so a slap on the wrist/apology is all that will happen. There won’t be the backlash of comments like when Graham Taylor made racist comments toward black players.

    • Yawn! .. The big sheep station wins

      January 24, 2011 at 4:11 pm

      We’ve just lost our only female footy caller in Australia as we wiggle and squirm about our silly experiment which will obviously never catch on.. I’m embarrrassed! ‘let’s give the girls a little go and let the public tell them what we all know’ says the boys club that spend their time hiding sexual demeanors of the young players.

    • Thomas

      January 25, 2011 at 11:29 am

      Grow up

      • maree

        September 14, 2015 at 1:34 pm

        its not a matter of grow up? its a matter of understanding hun?

    • WobblyWilly

      January 26, 2011 at 6:40 am

      Blown out of proportion. If they’d said the same about a male linesman, would they now be homophobic??

      Get a life losers…!

      • VSVS

        January 26, 2011 at 3:36 pm

        WobblyWilly….. Er homophobic? Not unless the linesman was gay and the made some sort of derogatory comment with regards to that.
        And I don’t see how it has been blown out of proportion at all.

        Just as a reminder this is what Gray said, “Can you believe that? A female linesman. Women don’t know the offside rule,” – Considering Sian Massey probably has been training for a lifetime to get where she is, suggesting she doesn’t know the offside rule and isn’t qualified to do her job merely because she is a woman is blatant sexism!

        And besides, Sky clearly agree considering Gray has been given the boot.

        As for “Get a life losers” Maybe you need to get with the times and realise it isn’t the 1950s any more. Times have moved on.

        • WobblyWilly

          January 27, 2011 at 2:46 am

          Yes Ma’am….!

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