Peter Beardsley set to meet Newcastle officials over bullying allegation

Peter Beardsley
Peter Beardsley

Newcastle United Under-23s coach Peter Beardsley was due to meet club officials today after finding himself at the centre of allegations of racism and bullying.

The club launched an investigation into the 56-year-old after a series of complaints were made, and he was due to attend a hearing with managing director Lee Charnley and head of safeguarding Steve Swinyard.

News of the meeting came after it emerged over the weekend that 22-year-old academy midfielder Yasin Ben El-Mhanni had made an allegation of bullying against Beardsley which will be dealt with later this week.

It is understood a series of El-Mhanni's team-mates have provided witness statements in support of his claim.

Beardsley made more than 300 appearances for Newcastle in two spells during a glittering career which also took him to Manchester United, Liverpool, Everton and Manchester City.

Following his retirement, he was offered a coaching role on Tyneside, but in 2003, he and academy director Kenny Wharton faced a Premier League inquiry which dismissed allegations of bullying made by youth players James Beaumont and Ross Gardner.

Beardsley left the club in 2006 but having returned in an ambassadorial role following Mike Ashley's takeover, was appointed as an Academy coach once again in 2009.

Newcastle's Under-23s were due to face Middlesbrough at Whitley Park tonight (7pm kick-off).