David Whelan should be knighted for his services to football and commerce. His achievements in both sectors have been remarkable. This man should not be monstered to kingdom come by politically correct zealots or overly protective representative bodies simply for uttering a couple of unacceptable and offensive sentences that clearly have no place in modern day Britain.

David Whelan, the owner of Wigan Athletic Football Club, has triggered a tsunami, indeed, an astonishing frenzy of criticism for making a couple of silly and offensive comments that he uttered to a journalist about Jewish and Chinese people. He said, “ Jewish people chase money ”, and, he referred to a Chinese person as, a “ Chink.” Both comments are of course utterly unacceptable in modern day Britain – that is taken as a given. But just hang on here for one second before the Third World War is declared on the individual who committed this mistake. This is my view:

I know David Whelan quite well. I like him. He is a good, honest, generous individual without a single racist bone in his body in the context of ugly, foul racism. Now, the politically correct zealots are calling for him to resign as Chairman of his beloved Wigan Athletic. The Football Association has launched an investigation into the context of his careless and unfortunate remarks to see if he should be called to answer for his behaviour. Yes, his comments were/are unacceptable and offensive in modern day Britain – but the reaction they have triggered from certain people and groups is not proportionate or appropriate in my view.

This man has done more for Wigan Athletic FC and football than any mandarin sitting in a glasshouse at the Football Association. People who will soon be called to judge him at the FA as they decide if he is ‘fit and proper’ or otherwise to hold such a position as Chairman of a Club – they might do well to first look at their own conduct and behaviour over recent years. Goodness me, if we called on executives to resign at the FA every time they found themselves in the eye of a media firestorm caused by yet another one of their oft controversial episodes – then the corridors of football power would echo with the sound of empty feet – if you get my drift.


What is it with these politically correct fascist zealots together with certain sections of the media? I don’t see these groups getting all hot under the collar when British people are referred to as a Brit, Limey, Pommy, Pom, Tommy, Brittunculi (wretched little Britons) Hun, Pakeha, Anglik, Bife, or any other derogatory name we Brits have been called. All of the above terms have been/are used to refer to the British in various parts of the globe – but so what? Not one of these terms offends me in the slightest and I’m sure that goes for 99.9% of my fellow Brits. So perhaps others should also take the same approach to such nicknames and keep them squarely in perspective where they surely belong.

Every right thinking person will deplore racism of any kind on any level that’s for sure. We should all never judge an individual by their colour, race, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, age, or any other irrelevant factor that some might wrongly believe such factors sets their character apart – it doesn’t.

We know that David Whelan’s comments have no place in our society today – but should that mean that we should not consider all factors in this case and weight the balance of fairness and proportionate reproach for such a mistake? This excellent football man and very good human being has already sincerely apologised for his regrettable comments – that should be sufficient in this instance. Leave this seventy seven year old man to self-reflect and then let him get on with the brilliant, truly magnificent job that he has done as the Chairman of Wigan Athletic FC.

Finally, before some brainless, fascist zealot accuses me of defending a man for uttering comments that have been interpreted as racist, therefore, by syllogistic logical argument, I must be a racist myself – let me tell them that the Mother of my three children is Scottish, my daughter-in-law of  the last two decades is Brazilian, my other son’s wife is Swedish and two of my grandchildren are part Afro-Caribbean – and they are all loved by me – more than you can ever imagine – so put that in your bigoted pipe and smoke it !!

Michael Knighton

Author Michael Knighton

Famous for his involvement with Manchester United and Carlisle United professional football clubs. This website showcases the other lifelong passions of Michael Knighton - as a creator of Art and Poetry and occasional blogger.

More posts by Michael Knighton

Join the discussion 6 Comments

  • phil craven says:

    Hear hear!!!!

  • june roby says:

    Dave welan should not be punished the man is old school and just needs educating a lot of elder people will talk that because thats wat they did x

  • Geordie says:

    Absolute bobbins. this is the bloke who when as chairman of Wigan Rugby League sacked a head coach in Mike Gregory as he was diagnosed with motor neurone disease.

  • thousands of men died in the last world war to give us freedom now we are being told what we can say

  • And.what we cannot say it his getting silly, Dave wellan has said nothing it is stupid

  • Alison Kennedy says:

    i think it’s absolutely disgusting how certain newspapers have blown this out of all proportion ( probably for political reasons) it’s nothing but bullying of a seventy seven year old man who simply spoke in the wrong terminology when trying to give an opinion. After all dave Welan is one of the biggest business man and ontroponer and money maker there is and there’s nothing wrong with people working hard and making money, i personally would take it has a compliment, it’s better than being lazy and living of others. Leave the man alone, and that goes for the MP’s that have got involved for political reasons we live in a democracy.

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