The Dutch soccer coach Vera Pauw raises serious allegations of rape against former employees of the Dutch association KNVB shortly before the start of the European soccer championship in England on Wednesday. She was raped as a young player 35 years ago, the current coach of the Irish women’s national team wrote on Twitter on Friday evening.
Two more sexual assaults by two other perpetrators were added later. “All three men were employed within Dutch football at the time of the incidents,” added the 59-year-old. After the KNVB did not respond satisfactorily to five reports of the incidents, Pauw claims to have informed the Dutch police.
The KNVB submitted a written statement to the Dutch newspaper “NCR”. It said: “Unfortunately, in the past, Vera was confronted with a number of (assessment) errors and harmful comments from (former) KNVB employees.” They wanted to speak to Pauw and also internally “as soon as possible”: “So that we can act.”
Pauw wrote that her life had been filled with pain for the past 35 years. Many people would have seen her as “a tough woman who made it to the top of a man’s world. Nothing can be further from the truth.”
Vera Pauw is supported by her employer. The Football Association of Ireland (FAI) has said she has been offered “any support she may need on a personal or professional level”.
The Irish national team does not take part in the European Championship, they were eliminated in qualifying group I in third place behind Germany and Ukraine.