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'The Sun' editor defends Roy Hodgson headline after FA criticism

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The Sun's editor has responded to the Football Association's criticism of their Roy Hodgson headline earlier this year.

The tabloid received complaints after they made fun of the England manager's inability to roll his 'R's on its front page in May.

The Sun Roy Hodgson front page (Wed 02/05/12)


FA chairman David Bernstein later described the newspaper's front page as "disrespectful" and "in poor taste".

Editor Dominic Mohan described the FA's criticisms as "perverse" and "ill-considered" after he was asked by the Leveson Inquiry to explain the decision behind the headline.

Editor of the Sun Dominic Mohan
"It is entirely right that The Sun, the country's most popular tabloid newspaper, should be able to converse with its readers in the colloquial language they adopt themselves and use wordplay around the nicknames they have themselves invented. This is one of the important ways in which a tabloid newspaper builds a rapport with its readers," Mohan wrote.

"The FA is entitled to its opinion, but I regard their criticism that the headline was 'in poor taste and disrespectful' as an ill-considered response, something I told the FA myself at the time of their complaint."

Mohan did however regret The Sun describing Hodgson as having a speech impediment.

"On reflection, I do not regard someone's inability to roll their 'Rs' as a speech impediment," he conceded. "Rather it is a simply a distinguishing feature of their speech."

He also cited four Guardian articles that used the word "Woy" between 2009-2011, and five stories in The Mirror between 2010-2012.

Jonathan Ross - who also has Hodgson's rhotacism speech issue - defended The Sun's frontpage after it was released.

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