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By ESPN Staff

Mawhinney hits out at Brooking over criticism

Football League chairman Lord Mawhinney has hit out at Sir Trevor Brooking after claiming his outspoken criticism of youth football has undermined confidence in him.

Brooking, the Football Association's director of football development, had voiced his frustration at the lack of funding and opportunities for British youngsters, telling BBC Radio Five Live: ''There's more money in the game than ever before, but I don't see us in 10 years' time having capitalised on it.''

Mawhinney, however, believes Brooking must shoulder the blame for any lack of improvement and his criticism could see the former Hammers players quit Soho Square.

''Frankly, I don't have much time for people who go public and criticise their employers,'' Mawhinney said. ''That doesn't seem to be a great idea.

''If the debate is about the inadequacy of coaching then it is perfectly legitimate to say that this is an FA responsibility, so let's ask some questions of the people in the FA who are responsible for coaching.

''This season, Football League clubs will be putting into youth development something north of £13million of their own money, the FA will be putting into football development £7.8 million pounds and last year it was £4.5million.

''Sir Trevor has been going on about age-related coaching, particularly five to 11-year-olds but he has been in the job for five years. What has been happening over the last five years?

''He's critical of coaching in the Football League but excuse me, who is responsible for coaching in this country?

''Somebody has to ask who has been responding to him in the last few years, including his employers.

''The way he is behaving and the scattered gun approach (of his criticism) isn`t justified. It is seriously starting to undermine our confidence in him.

''Trevor was a fantastic footballer. He was an iconic footballer but none of us must assume that because we were very good in one job that we are very good in all jobs.''

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