Sunderland's David Moyes charged over 'slap' comment made to female reporter

Sunderland's David Moyes charged over 'slap' comment made to female reporter

David Moyes has been charged over the comments he made to female reporter Vicki Sparks last month.

Danial Kennedy

The David Moyes 'slap' fiasco has taken another turn, with the Sunderland AFC manager been charged by the FA for the comments he made to journalist Vicki Sparks after the 0-0 draw with Burnley. 

Throwing the book at him 

It has been a miserable first season at the Stadium of Light for the Scotsman, with the Black Cats struggling at the foot of the Premier League table with relegation looking imminent for the Wearside club after many near misses. 

The pressure certainly seemed to get to Moyes after the frustrating stalemate with Sean Dyche's side back in March, stating off camera during a post-match interview to the BBC reporter that she was "getting a wee bit naughty" and that she "still might get a slap, even though you’re a woman." 

The footage of the exchange was leaked and the former Everton and Manchester United coach shared his regret over the comments he made and apologised to Sparks, but the coach has been subsequently charged and will have until Wednesday May 3 to reply.

A FA statement read: "It is alleged the Sunderland manager's remarks were improper and/or threatening and/or brought the game into disrepute." 

Confident of getting the points 

Sunderland seem to be just as disastrous on the pitch as they are off it as they look to make up ground on their relegation rivals, and Wednesday night arguably brings their biggest match of the season when they travel to take on North East rivals Middlesbrough. 

Three points seperate these two sides ahead of kick-off but more crucially ten separate Moyes' men and safety with six games to go, however if the Black Cats were going to launch a late push for safety it would need to start with a victory at the Riverside Stadium. 

Sunderland face a crucial run of four matches against four close rivals with clashes against Bournemouth, Hull City and Swansea City following the trip to Teesside, and Moyes stated that he is confident his side cant take the three points from Steve Agnew's men. 

“The only thing I have got in my head is how to beat Boro,” Moyes told his pre-match press conference.  “It is such a big game for both clubs." 

"We played well against West Ham and we'll go into this game confident," he stated. "We are really focusing on staying in the Premier League and if we win this next one it gives us a real chance on Saturday."