Brendan Rodgers refuses to apologise over sexism row involving BBC reporter

Celtic FC v Rangers FC - Cinch Scottish Premiership
Brendan Rodgers was branded a ‘dinosaur’ for his comment (Picture: Getty)

Celtic boss Brendan Rodgers has refused to apologise for calling BBC Scotland journalist Jane Lewis a ‘good girl’ amid accusations of sexism.

The former Liverpool manager has faced criticism for his comment which he made in a tense post-match interview after Sunday’s 3-1 win over Motherwell.

Rodgers was accused of ‘casual sexism’ by campaign group For Women Scotland while a spokeswoman from the Scottish Feminist Network called him a ‘dinosaur’.

But the Northern Irishman has played down the incident, insisting that he has a good professional relationship with Lewis and that she was not offended.

‘I’ve spoken to Jane and she wasn’t offended, we had a laugh about it,’ Rodgers said. ‘She’ll continue to ask me awkward questions I’m sure.

‘But I see her every week. We’ve got good relations, like I have with most people in my life, whether that’s professional or social.

‘So I find it saddening as much as anything, I’m not that type of person, it’s not who I am or how I’m built.

Celtic v Athletic Bilbao - Pre-Season Friendly
The Celtic boss says people are ‘looking to find something offensive’ (Picture: Getty)

‘But sadly for society now, people are just looking and trying to find ways to somehow bring you down if they can and that’s not nice.

‘Obviously sadly for me I think now in society, where people are looking to find something that is offensive to try and pin onto people.

‘You guys up here, any journalist or reporter, I’ve always based my life on relationships so I’ve always offered a warmth, respect, being courteous and offered time to people. That will never change.

‘The irony of it all is, and I shared this with players not long ago, the story of Jessica Watson, who was a young woman, 16, who travelled around the world solo on a boat and the documentary I watched was really inspiring.

‘True Spirit – it was called – and I shared that with the players in terms of the inspiration they could take from a young woman like that, what she’d been through.’

BBC Scotland reporter Lewis, meanwhile, said: ‘Clearly, the interview on Sunday has become a talking point. I don’t believe there was any offence meant by Brendan Rodgers – and for my part, there was none taken.’

A spokeswoman from For Women Scotland said: ‘It’s depressing that casual sexism is still embedded in sport.

‘Women’s achievements are underrated and dismissed, and their professional status undermined. Rodgers owes the reporter an apology.’ 

A Scottish Feminist Network spokeswoman added: ‘Jane Lewis was just doing her job, trying to extract an explanation from Brendan Rodgers on his cryptic comment.

‘That the go-to attitude was condescension is quite illuminating, but really very depressing in 2024.

‘We thought dinosaurs were extinct.’

Rodgers’ Celtic side currently sit second in the Scottish Premiership – two points behind their arch rivals Rangers – who sit top after 27 games this season.

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