By, Kyle Gibson
What if I told you that out of 92 teams, there are no black managers in English professional soccer?
No, this is not the promo for an ESPN “30 for 30 series.” It is however, very much real life.
See, when Chris Hughton was unjustly fired as the manager of Norwich City in the spring, the top 4 flights in English Soccer, known as the Football League, no longer had a black manager.
That number is outrageous. That number is sad. And, almost unbelievable for 2014, that number is true. 0.
Now, the Daily Mirror reported in an article by Darren Lewis that some in England are thinking of adopting a similar version of the “Rooney Rule” from the NFL. Read the article by the Mirror, it’s good work.
For those unfamiliar, the Rooney Rule was put into place by the NFL a few years back and requires that teams interview 1 black coach before selecting a head coach. As the Mirror says, 1 in 4 Football League interviews would have to be black if the motion passes.
The rule also has a proposed “12 month minimum on the job” for a potential Rooney Rule hire. I’m not sure if that clause would pass, because no manager gets 12 months to prove themselves these days. Look at David Moyes.
Will this exact referendum pass? Even if it fails, it does open up future discussion that will hopefully lead to more inclusive legislation.
After all, 0 out of 92 is a number that HAS to change. And fast.