In Brief

Kyle Walker: sex party could cost Man City star £250,000

City will conduct an internal disciplinary procedure into defender’s actions

In the war of words that has broken out in English football one thing is for certain: the players are losing the public relations battle and sympathy from the public is running short.

It’s not so much the ongoing row about pay cuts - although that is becoming increasingly distasteful as coronavirus continues to cut a deadly swathe across the country - but more the rank hypocrisy of one or two players who believe they can do as they please in these fraught times.

Last week it was Aston Villa captain Jack Grealish who made headlines after he was filmed crashing his car after a late-night party shortly after reminding us of the lockdown rules.

Now it’s the turn of Manchester City and England defender Kyle Walker to find himself plastered across the papers after, in the polite parlance of BBC Sport, he broke lockdown rules by “hosting a party involving two sex workers”.

The Sun is more explicit in its reporting of the party, describing how Walker and a friend invited two young women to his apartment last Tuesday and paid them “£2,200 in cash before moving through to the bedroom”, whereupon the 29-year-old Walker pulled out some gold-coloured Shine condoms.

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Hypocrite

What Walker, who’s single, does in his own time is his own business - in normal circumstances. But with the country on lockdown, he contravened the regulations and worse, he did so hours before telling the rest of the country to heed the government advice.

In a message posted on his Instagram account, Walker said: “Stay indoors, keep washing your hands, keep following the protocols and just protect the NHS. 

“It’s been tough, but first and foremost, we have to think about other people’s health and protecting the elderly and family members that can spread it.”

As one of the sex workers, Louise, put it: “Kyle really should know better. On the one hand he’s inviting strangers round to his house for sex, and the next day he’s lecturing everyone on the need to stay safe.”

Walker in hot water

Since the story broke at the weekend, Walker has apologised but BBC Sport says he is facing disciplinary action from his club. 

They have issued a statement saying: “Manchester City FC are aware of a story in a tabloid newspaper regarding the private life of Kyle Walker in relation to a breach of the UK lockdown and social distancing rules. 

“Footballers are global role models, and our staff and players have been working to support the incredible efforts of the NHS and other key workers in fighting the effects of the Covid-19 coronavirus in any way we can. 

“Kyle’s actions in this matter have directly contravened these efforts. We are disappointed to hear the allegations, note Kyle’s swift statement and apology, and will be conducting an internal disciplinary procedure in the coming days.”

According to the Daily Mirror Walker could be hit with a £250,000 fine, which would represent about two and a half weeks wages.

Today’s back pages

Liverpool slammed for furlough move as football’s civil war rages on

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