Chelsea: Eva Carneiro exposes what Jose Mourinho thinks of working women
When Chelsea FC’s manger Jose Mourinho thought it a good idea to admonish club doctor Eva Carneiro in public for treating Eden Hazard on the pitch, he crank-started the journalisomobile.
Michael Oliver, the referee, indicated that Hazard required attention. Mourinho felt that the more important factor was his team being down to nine men against Swansea (one had already been sent off).
Mourinho was upset, stating:
“I wasn’t happy with my medical staff because even if you are a medical doctor or secretary on the bench you have to understand the game.”
A secretary? Smell that whiff of sexism?
The Premier League Doctors Group (PLDG) is upset that Carneiro has been barred from attending training sessions, entering the Chelsea team hotel or taking her place on the bench for matches. Says the PLDG:
“The Premier League Doctors Group considers that removing Dr Eva Carneiro from the Chelsea team bench for their next match is unjust in the extreme. The medical staff were clearly summoned on to the field of play by the match referee to attend to a player. A refusal to run on to the pitch would have breached the duty of care required of the medical team to their patient.
“It is a huge concern that Dr Carneiro has been subjected to unprecedented media scrutiny and a change in her professional role, merely because she adhered to her code of professional conduct and did her job properly. Dr Carneiro has universal and total support from her medical colleagues at the Premier League Doctors Group.
“It is also of great concern that, at a time when the both the Premier League and the Premier League Doctors Group are intensifying efforts to safeguard player welfare, the precedent set by this incident demonstrates that the medical care of players appears to be secondary to the result of the game.”
Carneiro is a woman. So here’s Kelly Simmons, the FA director for participation and development:
“That’s obviously an issue for Chelsea. I’m not close to it but what I would say is we want to see more women in all roles in football, so hopefully what’s happened in the last 48 hours won’t put off young women wanting to work in what is a fantastic industry.”
Ralph Rogers, a former Chelsea doctor (he left the post in 2011), is on Mourinho’s side:
“You’re not supposed to take centre stage if you are a physician to a team,” Rogers was quoted as saying on the Daily Mail website. “You have to understand your dynamic in the club. You are not a player. Her putting that ‘thanks for the support’ on Facebook was extremely naive. That would upset anyone. What was she trying to achieve there? Are you bigger than the manager? You’re the backroom staff, you’re there to do a job. You’re not there as a cheerleader. You can play to it or play it down. It seems like she played to it. You’re not supposed to be a celebrity. You can’t be a celebrity doctor.”
Alyson Rudd (Times):
Only Mourinho knows if his statement that Carneiro, and Jon Fearn, the club’s physiotherapist, do not understand the game was a comment borne of sexism…
Whether subliminally or accidentally or deliberately, Mourinho has implied that the doctor from Gibraltar has a lack of football knowledge that will make any subsequent appearances from her on the pitch more difficult, given that she already receives taunts for her gender from the terraces.
What I really want to know is whether, if Carneiro was a man, Mourinho would have been so darned patronisingly angry with the medical team on Saturday, and if Carneiro is replaced by a man, whether he will be forced to agree that tactics come before health. And if he does agree to that dictum, does that make him a better football person or a worse doctor?