Mihir Bose: How race can trip us all up

The resignation of Paul Elliott from the FA and other bodies because he used the "n" word in a private text sent to another black player and a business colleague, is both sad and revealing. It is sad because Elliott had, probably still has, the capacity to go from having played the game at the highest level into becoming an excellent football administrator. It is revealing because it shows how attitudes to race, and particularly use of certain racial words, have been transformed in recent years.

Although Elliott did not like being described as an "insider" in many ways he was. This was exemplified by the fact that he advised David Cameron when he held his round table conference on racism in football in Downing Street last February. And in a country like the UK where, unlike many other countries, particularly on the continent, the ex footballer prefers to move from the players lounge to the television studio Elliott was prepared to sit many hours on committees and do his bit for the game.
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