Japan judo head resigns in wake of scandals

Updated 30 July 2013
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Japan judo head resigns in wake of scandals

TOKYO: The head of Japan's judo authority announced his resignation on Tuesday after the sport suffered a series of scandals including abusive coaching, sexual harassment and misuse of funds.
Haruki Uemura, head of the All Japan Judo Federation (AJJF), told a news conference that he would officially step down next month along with two other board members.
The announcement came after the government last week took the rare step of calling on the federation to overhaul its management to atone for the scandals.
"We took the recommendation gravely," Uemura said.
"The vice-chairman, secretary-general and I intend to resign. You can take the resignations as being a result of the scandals."
Public broadcaster NHK and Kyodo news agency reported that four board members, including Uemura, would resign. The federation could not immediately be contacted to address the discrepancy.
Japan's judo community was rocked in January this year when it emerged the coach of the national women's team was found to have used a bamboo sword to beat athletes, calling his charges "ugly" and telling them to "die" in the run-up to the London Olympics.
The coach later resigned.
In April, judo officials were accused of improperly receiving government coaching subsidies.
The following month, the federation said it was considering expelling one of its directors for life following the revelation that he made unwanted sexual advances toward a female athlete in 2011.
In the wake of the scandals, the Japanese government and International Judo Federation (IJF) president Marius Vizer separately called on the country's top judo body to clean up the sport.
Last month, Vizer said the world judo body has given the Japanese federation until October 15 to submit a full report on the incidents.


Jose Mourinho’s sacking leaves the ‘Special One’ at a career crossroads

Updated 18 December 2018
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Jose Mourinho’s sacking leaves the ‘Special One’ at a career crossroads

  • Since the middle of last season, Mourinho had been involved in a power struggle with senior members of the playing squad
  • A string of uninspiring performances since the season started saw Mourinho come in for criticism from all sides

LONDON: Five years after being snubbed for the Manchester United job immediately after the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho has once again been unceremoniously rejected by the club after two-and-a-half fractious and tumultuous years at the helm.
And the truth is, it was an inevitable divorce.
Since the middle of last season, Mourinho had been involved in a power struggle with senior members of the playing squad, openly criticized board members for a lack of backing in the transfer window and the majority of fans had started to turn on the so-called “Special One” and his tactics.
And while they would never do so publicly, no doubt several of the players who had fallen foul of Mourinho’s wrath were privately breathing a sigh of relief when the club announced that Mourinho had left the club with “immediate effect” on Tuesday.
Indeed, the player Mourinho clashed with the most — £89 million ($112 million) midfielder Paul Pogba — deleted a controversial social media post of himself smiling after the news broke.
That controversy was a microcosm of the French World Cup winner’s stormy relationship with Mourinho.
But the former Juventus player, who retuned to Manchester United having already been with the club during the Ferguson era, was repeatedly criticized by Mourinho during his reign and Pogba was stripped of the United vice-captaincy earlier this season.
The pair were captured having a frosty exchange on the training ground as Mourinho grew angry with his key midfielder’s lethargic performances, dropping him on several occasions to spark talk he would be sold by the end of the season.
And even on the pitch, the writing has been on the wall for a while.
A string of uninspiring performances since the season started saw Mourinho come in for criticism from all sides, as the Portuguese became more and more embittered and paranoid in his dealings with the media.
The final straw for the club was Sunday’s 3-1 defeat to Liverpool, who United usurped as the biggest club in England under Ferguson’s 27-year reign. And the Scot was seen shaking his head as he watched his dynasty unravel in front of his eyes at the hands of United’s bitterest of rivals.
While the Merseyside club battle it out for the Premier League title with Manchester City and Tottenham — all playing a refreshing, exciting brand of football — United find themselves 19 points adrift of the summit and struggling to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
Mourinho’s stagnant, defensive approach jarred with supporters, some of whom have only known the rampant attack-minded approach the club used to such devastating efficacy under Ferguson.
Mourinho was brought in to bring back those glory days after David Moyes and then Dutchman Louis van Gaal struggled to step out of Ferguson’s shadow.
And despite first-season League Cup and Europa League titles, he has failed miserably since. And he has bought himself little good grace with fans and officials, finding new excuses and ways to blame each latest defeat on his players, while ungraciously reminding critics of previous successes at Porto, Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid.
But this ignominious end for Mourinho in what he called his “dream job” leaves him at a crossroads in his career. Few clubs will have been inspired by his playing style with a highly-talented team, even fewer will want to deal with the off-field tantrums and constant bickering.
Having arrived in English football as a breath of fresh air, he leaves it (for now) like a foul odor. With the prospect of no club to manage, no trophies to win and no teams to build, Mourinho is now much less the “Special One,” and more and more likely to be the “Tainted One.”