Tuesday, January 24, 2012

24 January 2011 - Sky Sports Does All Of Us A Favor

On 24 January 2011, Sky Sports suspended commentators Andy Gray and Richard Keys for making sexist remarks. Although the suspension was originally announced as indefinite, it proved to be permanent, as their contracts were terminated soon afterward.

The pair had provided commentary for Sky Sports since the start of the first Premier League season in 1992. On 22 January 2011, they were covering a match between Wolves and Liverpool that included a female assistant referee, Sian Massey. When they believed their microphones were turned off, they discussed their belief that women "don't know the offside rule." Keys went further, anticipating a mistake by Massey (she did not make one, as her only offside call was correct). Keys then criticized a recent column written by West Ham vice-chair Karren Brady, saying "The game's gone mad. See charming Karren Brady this morning complaining about sexism? Yeah. Do me a favour, love."

After the recording leaked, their comments drew widespread condemnation. The pair were scheduled for the Chelsea-Bolton match on 24 January, but before kick-off Sky Sports announced their suspension, saying the comments were "totally inappropriate" and "inexcusable from anyone at Sky Sports." One day later, the network ended their relationship with Gray, citing a separate incident from the previous December. Keys, meanwhile, resigned on 26 January after the release of previous comments of his own.

The two have since moved on and now provide commentary and analysis for Talksport.

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