A really cool thing has happened in France.
Clermont Foot, a Ligue 2 club, hired Helena Costa as their new manager. Helena Costa is the former Iran and Qatar women's national team coach, studied under Jose Mourinho during his first spell at Chelsea, coached youth teams at Benfica, and is a former Celtic scout.
This makes her the first female manager in one of the top two divisions in the five biggest European countries (England, France, Germany, Spain, Italy), at the young age of 36, and her appointment should hopefully shatter any stereotypes that women are somehow less intelligent or inferior about the game we love than men.
I haven't seen Costa coach yet, and already I feel she's a better manager than Alan Pardew.
All of this brings us to today's press conference at Arsenal, where this historic appointment was brought up to Arsene Wenger. His response to Costa's hire:
I like it. Men manage women, why should women not manage men?" Wenger said today in his press briefing, before adding: "It happens to us all at home.
The only thing I was always a big defender of in my life is to defend competence. If you are competent, you get the job anywhere.
Having looked at her experience, the only restrictions you could have is she has very little experience as a coach but maybe she has top qualities and will show that.
Very congratulatory in his comments, respectful and clearly displays tolerance to women managers in a male-dominated sport. Not at all sexist or demeaning.
Enter James Olley of the London Evening Standard:
Wenger on appointment of Helena Costa at Clermont Foot: "It happens to all of us at home that we are managed by women so why not?"— James Olley (@JamesOlley) May 8, 2014
Cool story bro.
How about next time, instead of twisting a guy's words to make it appear like he's an old French douchebag who dismisses the progression of women in sport, you accurately report his comment? Or is that too much to ask? Maybe, if you realize the comment contains more than 140 characters, you either type out multiple tweets to get the full comment out there, or you leave it off Twitter? If you're looking to, for whatever reason, make a cheeky, passing joke about it, don't condense it.
James Olley has nearly 22,000 followers on Twitter who may not read the full quote from Wenger and instead rely on his tweets for news (which is an entirely different discussion in its own right). He's influential, and his tweet above elicited quite a few negative comments about him. These are people who, more than likely, rely heavily on Twitter to get their information, and because of that tweet they've made up their minds that Arsene Wenger's a sexist pig.
In short, James Olley's the sexist pig who decided to use Arsene Wenger as his vehicle to push a terrible, horribly-delivered joke on unsuspecting Twitter followers. If there's any justice in the world, a woman will take his job over one day.