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UK Roundup

FA says Eriksson, Palios had affairs with secretary

Posted: Sunday July 25, 2004 3:00PM; Updated: Sunday July 25, 2004 3:00PM
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  Sven-Goran Eriksson, Nancy Dell'Olio (left)
Sven-Goran Eriksson's relationship with Nancy Dell'Olio (left) survived a high-profile, previous affair.
Stu Forster/Getty Images

LONDON (Reuters) -- England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson had an affair with a Football Association (FA) secretary, the FA said in a statement on Sunday.

English soccer's ruling body had previously denied newspaper reports about 56-year-old Eriksson's relationship with secretary Faria Alam, aged 38.

"Earlier in the week, the Football Association made statements on behalf of Faria Alam denying that she has a sexual relationship with the England coach Sven-Goran Eriksson," the FA statement said.

"New evidence has been presented to us in the form of e-mails which Ms. Alam has sent to friends about the relationship and, having made further inquiries, these confirm that a relationship did take place."

The FA also confirmed that its chief executive Mark Palios, Eriksson's boss at the FA, had also had a relationship with Alam, who is of Bangladeshi origin.

"With regard to the chief executive Mark Palios we believe this is a private matter, but we have seen evidence from e-mails sent by Ms Alam, and having made further inquiries, these confirm an extremely brief relationship did take place," the statement said.

Eriksson, appointed England coach in January 2001, took the team to the quarterfinals of the 2002 World Cup and Euro 2004.

Eriksson's long-standing relationship with Italian Nancy Dell'Olio survived a previous affair with fellow Swedish celebrity Ulrika Jonsson.

Liverpool in talks with Spanish defender Josemi

LONDON (Reuters) -- Liverpool are in talks to sign Spanish utility defender Josemi from Malaga, the premier league club's website reported on Sunday.

The 24-year-old is set to become the first major signing for Liverpool's new Spanish coach Rafael Benitez.

"I was speaking to Benitez, he has put his faith in me and I will work to make sure things turn out well," Josemi was quoted as saying. "It was an offer I couldn't refuse.

"I am really happy because this is an unbeatable opportunity. If I was ever going to leave Malaga, it was for something like this.

"It's what I've always dreamed about and now I have the chance to play in a big team."

Both the Associated Press and Reuters contributed to this report.

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