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Football: Moody quits Palace after Tan file sparks FA probe

Iain Moody resigned as sporting director of Premier League side Crystal Palace on Thursday (Aug 21) after a file alleging misconduct during his time with Cardiff was sent by the Welsh club to the Football Association.

LONDON: Iain Moody resigned as sporting director of Premier League side Crystal Palace on Thursday (Aug 21) after a file alleging misconduct during his time with Cardiff was sent by the Welsh club to the Football Association.

According to a report in Britain's Daily Mail, the file alleges that both Moody and Malky Mackay, who was sacked as Cardiff manager by Malaysian owner Vincent Tan in December 2013, sent a series of racist, sexist and homophobic text messages to one another during their time with the Welsh side.

Two months after Mackay's departure his right-hand man Moody was fired by Cardiff, going on to join Palace's management staff. A Palace statement issued on Thursday said: "In light of the events of yesterday, sporting director Iain Moody has tendered his resignation and it has been accepted with immediate effect. There will be no further comment from the club on this matter."

The Mail reported the dossier had come to light after Cardiff engaged London-based law firm Mischon de Reya, whose investigators obtained a High Court writ to enter Moody's house in Balham, south London, where they seized work computers and phones.

Caretaker manager Keith Millen, who will take charge of Palace's Premier League clash at home to West Ham on Saturday, said Moody's exit would be a blow to the south London club. "Iain was brought in to do a job to recruit and scout players, and Iain was experienced at that job," Millen said. "The chairman will now have to look at that situation, to see whether he wants to bring someone in."

Moody's departure would appear to have closed the door on Mackay succeeding Tony Pulis as Palace manager.

MACKAY'S 'GOOD TRACK RECORD'

Millen, a candidate for the full-time post himself, said Mackay would have been well-suited to taking charge at Selhurst Park.

"Malky has got a good track record: I think he's used to working with players that want to work hard for him," Millen explained. "The way he set his teams up, they were successful and organised. And that's our DNA as a club and a squad, to make sure we work hard for each other, there's a great togetherness in the group."

Mackay guided Cardiff to the Premier League after a 51-year absence from English football's top flight but that didn't stop Tan sacking both him and Moody. Cardiff on Thursday declined to make any public comment on the dossier and the matter is now in the hands of the FA.

The FA has confirmed it has received a detailed account of issues related to Mackay and Moody. An FA spokesman said: "The FA can confirm it is currently investigating this matter."

Other candidates to fill the managerial vacancy at Palace include former Norwich and Newcastle boss Chris Hughton as well as Tim Sherwood, previously in charge of Tottenham Hotspur.

After he was sacked by Cardiff, Mackay launched a £7.5 million (S$15.6 million, US$12.4 million, €9.4 million) legal claim against Tan for compensation but dropped the claim in May and apologised to the Bluebirds' owner.

Earlier this week Palace were fined by the Premier League for their part in the 'spygate' saga involving Cardiff last April. The Premier League determined that Palace had breached their 'good faith' rule by obtaining information about Cardiff's team ahead of their 3-0 win when the two clubs were relegation rivals. The Welsh club had complained to the Premier League that Moody had contacted Cardiff employees for information in the build-up to the game.

Millen added: "Each day something has unfolded, something has come out, so it's been difficult. I had a brief chat with the players about staying focused, and the lads have been fine, they are resilient as a group." 

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