Who is Lord Triesman?

By Marcus Dysch, May 21, 2010

Lord Triesman, the Labour peer, has resigned from his roles as chairman of the Football Association and its World Cup 2018 bid.

His departure followed revelations in a Sunday newspaper that he had accused Spain and Russia of planning to bribe referees at this summer's World Cup in an attempt to aid their own 2018 bids.

The comments were made during a private meeting with Melissa Jacobs, a 37-year-old former aide who secretly recorded their conversation.

She also claims to have had an affair with the 66-year-old, which he denies.

David Triesman was born into a staunchly left-wing Jewish family in Tottenham, north London.

His father, Michael, who was an advertising manager and wartime aircraft inspector, and his mother, Rita, were devout Communists.

In an interview with the JC in 2002 he said: "I was very fortunate in growing up in a genuinely international household with people debating and arguing about everything.

"Of course being Jewish played a part, though not in the religious sense. Yet even the devout Communists in the family observed Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur."

While studying at Essex University, David Triesman became embroiled in a series of protests which earned him a suspension and an MI5 file for his role within the Radical Student Alliance.

Before joining the FA in 2008 he had a lengthy political career, joining the Labour Party as a teenager and later spending seven years as a Communist Party member.

He is a former head of the Association of University Teachers and an ex-general secretary of Labour. He was made a life peer in 2004 and married Lucy Hooberman, a former BBC executive, six years ago.

He took a leading role in attacking a 2002 New Statesman cover illustration which depicted a large Magen David on a Union Jack and the words "A kosher conspiracy?".

Following the revelations in the Mail on Sunday, Lord Triesman said in a statement: "A private conversation, with someone whom I thought to be a friend, was taped without my knowledge and passed to a national newspaper.

"That same friend has also chosen to greatly exaggerate the extent of our friendship. In that conversation I commented on speculation circulating about conspiracies around the world. Those comments were never intended to be taken seriously, as indeed is the case with many private conversations."

Now the Apprentice star and former Tottenham Hotspur chairman Lord Sugar has voiced interest in replacing Lord Triesman at the FA.

Lord Sugar, whose governmental enterprise tsar role ended with Labour's election defeat, told the Sun on Monday that he would like the role.

"I would certainly be interested. Not just in terms of the World Cup bid but in terms of reforming the whole FA."

Last updated: 2:48pm, May 21 2010