Arsenal U23 coaches suspended after bullying claims

ARSENAL have suspended their Under-23 coach Steve Gatting and his assistant Carl Laraman following accusations of bullying made against them.

“We have suspended two coaches and launched an investigation following complaints from some players,” an Arsenal spokesman said. "These are private matters and we will not discuss any further detail.”

Under-18s coach Kwame Ampadu took their place in the dug-out for Tuesday’s Premier League International Cup final against Porto.

Both Gatting and Laraman are long-standing members of staff at Arsenal. Gatting, 58, is the brother of legendary England cricketer Mike, while his son Joe plays for Sussex CC.

The former defender/ midfielder made 76 appearances for the Gunners, featuring in three consecutive FA Cup finals. Laraman, 56, was in charge of the Under-9s, U13s and U18s before moving on to the 23s.

TGG understands that an initial complaint of verbal bullying was made by French teenager Yassin Fortune, who was released after three years at the club earlier this week.

Several further complaints were then made to the club's welfare officer, leading to the decision to suspend the duo. This happened two weeks ago, although it was only announced by the club yesterday.

The Islington Gazette reported that Marcus McGuane, who moved to Barcelona in January, had made a complaint against the coaches, but the midfielder quickly moved to deny this.

He tweeted: “In relation to an article published by Islington Gazette - I have not been involved in any investigation nor made any complaint about the coaches concerned. I had a wonderful 12 years at Arsenal. The article is inaccurate and misleading. My name has been removed from the article.”

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