Marcus Rashford has been included on the Football Black List together with other important figures within the industry, which celebrates the most influential Black people in the British game.
The initiative was established in 2008 by sports journalists Leon Mann and Rodney Hinds to celebrate the positive impact that the Black community has within the sport, which is featured in The Voice, the UK’s only national Black newspaper.
"The global Black Lives Matter protests have made the game reflect on its own diversity and relationship with Black communities,” said Mann.
"The Football Black List provides a snapshot of the wonderful contribution the Black community makes to the national sport. We hope it inspires the next generation of Black leaders to follow those listed and the initiative helps encourage the football industry to put diversity at the top of the agenda - where it needs to be to make much needed progress in this area."
Voting takes place from a panel made up of experts from the Black community and the football industry, with nominees selected by the public. The 2020 panel included those from the Premier League, the FA, the LMA, EFL, BCOMS and Kick It Out.
Rashford’s inclusion on the Football Black List is in recognition for his efforts of campaigning for free schools meals and bringing to light the importance of the matter surrounding children in food poverty.
Alongside Rashford joins a host of other footballers, including Chloe Morgan, Crystal Palace Women’s goalkeeper, for raising awareness of Black representation and LGBTQ+ inclusion in the women’s game; Aston Villa defender Tyrone Mings and Watford striker Troy Deeney also featured for using their platforms to challenge racial injustice; and Palace forward Wilfried Zaha for supporting nurses throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Off of the pitch, the FA’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Director Edleen John, Aston Villa Women’s sporting director Eni Aluko and QPR director of football Les Ferdinand were all included on the list too. The Football Black List 2020 saw the addition of the LGBTQ+ Award, given to Annette Nelson who is the education lead for Football v Homophobia.
Football Black List co-founder Hinds added: “Yet again the Football Black List has unearthed many in the community that are doing great work.
“The efforts of Marcus Rashford deserve acclaim alongside the others on the list who go about their business for the good of others.
“The Voice is happy to be home of the Football Black List and after a year of challenges it is great to be provided with inspiration.”
Next week, the Ugo Ehiogu ‘Ones to Watch’ category will be released, which identifies talented young people within the industry under the age of 30. Details around an online celebratory event are also set to be announced.
The full Football Black List:
Cyrille Regis Players: Chloe Morgan, Crystal Palace Women; Marcus Rashford MBE, Manchester United and England; Troy Deeney, Watford; Tyrone Mings, Aston Villa and England; Wilfried Zaha, Crystal Palace and Ivory Coast
Administration: Edleen John, Director of International Relations, Corporate Affairs and Diversity - The FA; Eniola Aluko, Sporting Director - Aston Villa FC Women; Jade Morgan, General Manager - Leicester City Women; Les Ferdinand MBE, Director of Football - Queens Park Rangers; Marie Gabriel CBE, Chairperson - West Ham United Foundation
Coaching and Management: Alex Dyer, Manager - Kilmarnock FC; Ashley Bosah & Cornelius Nwadialor, Joint Managers - Tooting & Mitcham FC; Jason Euell, Under 23 Head Coach - Charlton Athletic FC; Karleigh Osborne, Women's Head Coach - Brentford FC; Tony Whelan, Assistant Academy Director - Manchester United
Commercial: Ashanti George-Faure, Senior Talent Manager - Refresh Sports; Faina Msellam, Sports Industry Advisory Board Member - Birkbeck Sport Business Centre; Marvin Morgan, Founder - Fresh Ego Kid; Nathan Thompson, Commercial Director - West Ham United; Warren Haughton, Director, Haughton Consultancy
Community and Grassroots: Diane Sawyers, Operations Manager - Holford Drive Community Sports Hub; Duke Harrison-Hunter, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Officer - Pompey in the Community; Emma Trent, Head of Programmes - Notts County Football in the Community; Harold Bennett, Founder - North London United; Dr. Michael Seeraj, Head of Equality Diversity & Inclusion - Charlton Athletic FC
LGBT+: Annette Nelson, Education Lead - Football v Homophobia
Media: Carl Anka, Football Reporter - The Athletic; Charlene Gravesande, Special Projects Journalist - Sky Sports; Hugh Woozencroft, Sports Broadcaster - talkSPORT; Jessica Creighton, Sports Reporter - Sky Sports; Micah Richards, Freelance Broadcaster
Practitioners: Hayley Bennett, Founder - WeAreNutmegs; Jason Lee, Equalities Education Executive - PFA; Marvin Robinson, CEO - Peterborough United Foundation; Dr. Matt Ogunsanya, Club Doctor - Watford FC; Sam Allison, National Group Referee – PGMOL
Author: Jake Wilkin