Athletics

Michael Johnson Spoke A Lot Of Sense About Mo Farah's Battle With The Media

Michael Johnson Spoke A Lot Of Sense About Mo Farah's Battle With The Media

Mo Farah took aim at the media on Sunday morning, accusing certain members of attempting to 'destroy' his legacy in track athletics with unwarranted allegations.

'History doesn’t lie,' said Farah, adding that his achievements are the result of hard work and nothing else. That, of course, is a history which has seen him improve from being a slightly above average middle distance runner to one of the greatest of all-time.

His improvement coincided with Alberto Salazar becoming his coach in 2011. The head of the Nike Oregon Project is currently under investigation by the US Anti-Doping Agency.

It is his association with Salazar and also the controversial Jama Aden which has maintained the flow of questions and doubts about Farah's achievements.

On BBC's coverage of the World Athletics Championships on Sunday evening, Salazar received a mention during a discussion about Farah. It was an acknowledgment rarer than Steve Cram speaking about a British athlete in a reserved tone.

Michael Johnson was the voice to utter Salazar's name. He did so while attempting to explain why Farah must accept that accusations are - given the current climate in the sport and his relationship with controversial individuals - going to be part of being an athlete.

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I think what he has to realise... and I understand his point and why he would be frustrated, there's no proof of anything, the investigation into Alberto Salazar continues but I think his point would be, 'Until you find something, don't accuse me'; I get that and I understand that.

What he has to understand though is that with the sport being as it is right now with all of the things that have happened, it's not enough anymore to just say, 'I never tested positive,' because there are many people to have subsequently found to have been cheating.

He has to understand that the media is going to take that and say, 'Look, you may be getting away with something, we're going to continue to investigate.' He has to understand that and say, 'Hey, fine. Investigate it but don't accuse me. That's where I draw the line.'

I think he's gotten frustrated and it all came out today. It probably wasn't the best time to discuss that and to address that in the way that he did. He probably should have waited a little bit. That's now going to overshadow his last race here and his performances here over the last week. It's now about these allegations.

You can watch Michael Johnson speak about Mo Farah below.

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PJ Browne
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