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Premier League players call for more BAME coaches in set-up

English Premier League players want clubs to utilise a quota system to have at least one Black, Asian or ethnic minority (BAME) coach as part of their first-team staff.

The quota system has been adopted and utilised by the FA two years ago, which assigns at least one BAME coach to each English national team, as part of the new equality action plan. This has led to the likes of Chris Powell and Sol Campbell taking on key coaching roles. Powell has worked with Gareth Southgate’s senior squad, while Campbell has coached at Southend United and Macclesfield Town.

Premier League sides are under pressure to follow this example in light of the conversations triggered by the Black Lives Matter movement, as there is a lack of representation of minority groups in coaching positions. To clarify the disparity, in the Premier League, more than 30 percent of players are from a BAME background. However, compare this figure for coaches which is around five percent.

Captains within the Premier League were influential in persuading clubs to replace shirt names with 'Black Lives Matter' for the first round of fixtures of the resumed season.

The same group are now behind calls for a coaching quota. However, it is more complex as it would affect clubs' staffing levels and budgets, as well as time concerns, as any change is not thought to be instant.

The FA's 2018 equality action plan involved the governing body introducing the Rooney Rule in their recruitment process, under which they committed to interviewing at least one BAME candidate for all England coaching roles.

The Football League followed the FA's example the following year, but the Premier League have so far resisted the change and are not planning to alter their approach.

Author: James Parker