The last thing the English FA needed, you would have thought, was another debacle about the manager of the women’s national team.

The Mark Sampson palaver – which saw the former England women’s team manager sacked for racially discriminatory remarks towards members of the squad – reflected quite appallingly on the FA, with the national governing body being slated from all quarters about their handling of the issue. Yet the task of appointing a new manager without causing further controversy has, it seems, been beyond them.

Earlier this week, former Manchester United player Phil Neville was appointed as Sampson’s successor as national manager but within hours of him being unveiled as England boss, a series of sexist tweets came to light.

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“Relax I’m back chilled – just battered the wife!!! Feel better now!”, he tweeted in 2011. And in 2012 he posted: “Morning men couple of hours cricket be4 work sets me up nicely for the day!” When asked why he failed to mention women, Neville wrote: “When I said morning men I thought the women would of been busy preparing breakfast/getting kids ready/making the beds – sorry morning women!”

This is the guy who is now the highest-profile individual in women’s football in the UK and he has an attitude that belittles domestic violence and is stuck in the 1950s when it comes to household chores. Great judgment by the FA who, it has been reported, knew about the tweets in advance of appointing Neville. He has now deleted his Twitter account, because that solves all the problems, doesn’t it?

It’s good to see that the FA have so little concern for optics that they are prepared to take the flack they must have known was coming their way for giving the job to someone who seems to think that a woman’s place is in the kitchen.

In fairness, Neville’s apology for the offending tweets did appear to be genuine but at what point is an apology not enough and in fact, previous behaviour is disqualifying regardless of how heartfelt any apology is?

While it seems impossible to imagine that there were no viable candidates for the position who had not expressed blatantly misogynistic views, this is not, in fact, the most troublesome aspect of Neville’s appointment.

The 41 year-old has been appointed manager of the national team with the bare minimum of managerial experience. In 2013, he was beaten to the post of under-20 England manager by Roberto Martinez while in 2015, he joined Valencia as a coach before briefly becoming assistant manager. Should this be considered adequate experience to manage England women, who are currently ranked third in the world? I would suggest not. And to add to that lack of experience in management, Neville has no experience in the women’s game at all.

It is a considerable smack in the face for the sport in Britain, particularly when England appear to be leading the way when it comes to promoting women’s football.

However, by appointing someone like Neville, who is so spectacularly inexperienced, it is a considerable insult to every female football coach in the nation. The FA claimed their search for a new national manager spanned 30 countries, yet the best answer they could come up with was Neville. That is disappointing, to say the least.

As most people are, I’m entirely against a woman being given this job as a token gesture. But considering that the opportunities for women within the men’s game are so chronically limited, there has to be a will to push women forward within women’s football.

The obvious question is: would someone with such a dearth of experience be asked to manage the England men’s team? The answer is, of course, no. There are plenty of world-class female coaches so why were the FA so unable attract one of them?

It remains to be seen if Neville is ultimately a success as England manager. I would be delighted if he was because the more success women’s football teams have in the UK, the more it benefits the game as whole. But the fact cannot be avoided that once again, the women’s game has been treated as a second-class citizen.