Former Chelsea coaches Graham Rix and Gwyn Williams accused of bullying and racist abuse against youth players

Former Chelsea youth coaches Graham Rix and Gwyn Williams have been accused of bullying and racially abusing youth players at the club.

The Stamford Bridge club has been rocked by legal claims by three players amid allegations young black players were treated “like a race of f*****g dogs”.

Chelsea notified police and the FA after a civil claim was instigated by a letter to the club, reports the Guardian.

But after a seven-month investigation, the police decided there was insufficient evidence to take action.

Both Rix and Williams deny all of the allegations dating from the 1990s. Their solicitor has issued a statement highlighting the fact that police did not “consider there was sufficient evidence even to report it to the CPS”.

The Blues have launched their own internal probe, offering in-house counselling to at least one of the players, while the FA’s safeguarding team has interviewed two of the players, according to the Guardian.

Rix is alleged to have thrown hot coffee in a player’s face
(Image: Reuters)

In one instance, Rix, then the youth team coach, is alleged to have thrown a cup of hot coffee in a player’s face after asking if he had tried to have sex with “any of our white girls” at the weekend.

The player claims that when he asked Rix to stop targeting him, he was physically assaulted by the former Arsenal midfielder, who was allegedly singing Billy Ocean’s When the Going Gets Tough during the alleged attack.

Both Rix and Williams are alleged to have used language including “darkie”, “nignog”, “black b*****d”, “wog” and “jigaboo”.

Williams pictured in his Chelsea kit in 1990
(Image: Bob Thomas Sports Photography)

Rix and Williams, who worked under Glenn Hoddle, Ruud Gullit and Gianluca Vialli at Stamford Bridge, have declined to comment when approached by the Guardian.

During one youth team game, Rix, now 60, is alleged to have humiliated a black outfield player by substituting him for the reserve goalkeeper, later saying that if his heart was as big as his manhood, he would be a great player.

He’s said to have followed it up with a racist remark, saying the player should have been “the only person in the whole stadium to be able to enjoy the 40-degree heat” because “blacks were always winning the long-distance Olympic events in the heat, if they weren’t chucking spears”.

Rix denies the allegations (player pictured is not an alleged victim)
(Image: Getty Images Europe)

The player claims that Williams, a prominent figure at Chelsea for 25 years, told him to “f*** off back to Africa” and go to “sell drugs or rob old grannies”.

Williams, 54, who later worked as Leeds’ Technical Director, allegedly told the player to “go and clean my office, Richard Pryor – shine my shoes like a good wog” or “pick up your lip, it’s dragging on the floor”.

A manager at the player’s subsequent club has submitted a report, describing him as a “good professional” who had been “stripped of his self-confidence”.

Williams with Ruud Gullit at the 1997 FA Cup Final
(Image: Popperfoto)

The player, now in his late 30s, says he was “failed” by the FA who didn’t do enough to protect him and hopes others will now come forward.

He says Williams began racially abusing him shortly after he joined the club as a schoolboy, at age 12 or 13. The coach would allegedly use terms such as “you little black b*****d” and “coon”.

He said: “He’d walk in and go, ‘Hey, look at the f*****g blackies here then. F*****g rubber lips. Look at their f*****g big noses. You black b*****d. Been f*****g robbing cars, have you?’ Let me tell you something – that is the most demoralising feeling you could ever have.”

Rix filled a number positions at Chelsea
(Image: Getty Images Europe)

During an interview with the FA, the player claimed Williams also made suggestions alleging that he should be using drugs, referencing “wacky baccy”.

Rix is alleged to have thrown hot coffee in his face when he finally stood up to him for ‘digging him out’.

Recalling the alleged incident, the player said: “It burned my face. I went to grab him. I wanted to kill this guy. Then I had to think … black boy, six foot whatever, hits a white coach – he’s out of football. So I had to hold myself in and I went in to put water on my face because it was burning.”

A separate legal letter to Chelsea details an alleged incident during which the player asked Rix to stop making what he deemed to be suggestive remarks to his sister.

Rix had a spell as Hearts manager in 2006
(Image: Getty Images Europe)

Rix is alleged to have replied: “I will do whatever I want and if I fancy a bit of black I guarantee her black a*** will get it,” before allegedly punching him in the scrotum.

Williams joined Chelsea in 1979 and went to to fill various roles, including assistant manager to Claudio Ranieri. He worked for Jose Mourinho in the scouting team and is credited with discovering John Terry.

He left the club in 2006, following former Chelsea chairman Ken Bates to Leeds, where he was made Technical Director. Williams was sacked by Leeds for gross misconduct in 2013 after emailing pornographic images of women to colleagues.

In 1999 Rix was jailed for 12 months and put on the sex offenders register after he admitted two charges of unlawful sex with a 15-year-old girl and indecent assault.

Graham Rix in action during the 1982 World Cup match between England and France at San Mames stadium on June 16, 1982
Rix in action during the 1982 World Cup match between England and France
(Image: Duncan Raban/Allsport/Getty)

On his release after serving six months behind bars, he was reinstated by Chelsea and was the first team coach when Vialli’s team won the FA Cup in 2000. He later had a brief spell as caretaker manager.

After that, he managed Portsmouth, Oxford United and Hearts. His last managerial job in England was at AFC Portchester of the Wessex League Premier Division, but he left that post in August.

Eddie Johns, the solicitor representing Rix and Williams, released a statement on his clients’ behalf, saying: “Our clients deny all and any allegations of racial or other abuse.

“These allegations were the subject of a thorough investigation by specialist officers of the Metropolitan Police Service. The MPS did not consider there was sufficient evidence even to report it to the CPS. Our clients cooperated with that investigation.

“The allegations in The Guardian newspaper are contained, as we understand it, within correspondence sent to Chelsea Football Club. That correspondence has not been seen by our clients or by us.

“No correspondence has been sent to our clients or us by these individuals or those representing them. We will of course deal with any allegations if made directly to our clients.

“Our clients are cooperating fully with the FA in this matter.”

A Chelsea statement reads: “We take allegations of this nature extremely seriously.

“We are absolutely determined to do the right thing, to fully support those affected, assist the authorities and support their investigations.”

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