Reflecting on his own sport, Sterling pointed to the long-standing disparity between the number of top BAME players and the shortage of those who continue to win important managerial, managerial or administrative positions. Sterling cited the fortunes of Steven Gerrard and Frank Lampard, who landed starring roles at Rangers and Chelsea early in their managerial careers, compared to equally experienced black players who were forced to start much lower in the game. ‘ladder.
“Now is the time to talk about these issues, to talk about injustice, especially in my field,” said Sterling. “There are something like 500 players in the Premier League and a third of them are black and we have no representation of us in the hierarchy, no representation of us in the coaching teams. There are not many faces with which we can identify and have conversations.
“With these protests taking place, everything is fine, it is enough to speak, but it is time that we need conversations, to be able to start debates. But at the same time, it comes together and finds a solution to be able to trigger change because we can talk as much as we want to change and put people, black people, in those positions in which I think they should be.
“I’m going to give a perfect one. There is Steven Gerrard, your Frank Lampards, you have your Sol Campbells and you have your Ashley Coles. All have had great careers, all have played for England. At the same time, they all respectfully made their coaching badges to coach at the highest level and the two who did not have the right opportunities are the two former black players.
“I feel like what’s missing here is not just getting on the knee, it’s giving people the chance they deserve. “
Sterling also believes there is a lack of representation in the governance of the game, suggesting that a more diverse mix is needed in the corridors of power. Asked what would represent the success of the change movement, he replied, “When there are more blacks in positions. When I can have someone with a dark background so I can go to the FA with a problem I have with the club. This will be the time when I know that changes are happening. “
The former Manchester United and Aston Villa striker Dwight Yorke also lamented his difficulties in the management market, revealing that even one hand from Sir Alex Ferguson could not help him win a shot in another of its old clubs. He told BeIN Sports: “I applied twice for the Villa position. I get a response from the CEO and his response was that I needed experience.
“Where am I going to go to gain experience if I’m not lucky? “When I applied for the Villa position, I entered [Ferguson’s] office and told him exactly what I was trying to do. He gave me experience, he told me what to do and I chose his brain. At the same time, he picked up the phone and called Villa for a recommendation. With his help, I still cannot get an interview. This is what we are facing. ”
The Football Association launched a three-year placement program for aspiring BAME coaches in 2018, with Campbell among the top candidates, while earlier this year retired Liam Rosenior and Marvin Sordell duo joined the board advisory body for the governing body. Sterling may not believe that the symbolic gesture of sinking to one knee is enough on its own, but the anti-racism charity Kick It Out believes that a coordinated gesture when the Premier League returns later this month- this would be powerful.
Sanjay Bhandari, president of the organization, said, “I think now is something that needs to be organized – I would like each club to do something together, but it should be entirely up to the players. It would be a fantastic signal if each club took a knee before a match. You can’t shake hands before kick-off, so maybe they could replace it with a new pre-game ritual. We are having conversations to see what the appetite is. “