PFA chief wants more chances for black British managers

Thursday 31 March 2011 10:22 BST

Professional Footballers Association chief executive Gordon Taylor wants more black British players to be given a fair chance to enter management.

Notts County's Paul Ince and Charlton's Chris Powell are currently the only homegrown black managers employed in the npower Football League or Barclays Premier League, with only a handful of others having been given their chance.

And Taylor told BBC Radio 5 Live: "I find it astonishing that we can import the likes of Jean Tigana and Ruud Gullit and there's no problem, but our own lads who have grown up in this country who have not been given a chance to be fairly represented."

Ince began his managerial career with successful spells at Macclesfield and MK Dons but failed when given his top-flight chance with Blackburn.

The former England midfielder became the first black British manager in the Premier League despite not holding a UEFA pro license but was sacked after just 17 games in charge, having won only three, and returned to Milton Keynes.

"Paul Ince should have been fully qualified when he got the Blackburn job," Taylor continued.

"I spoke to Richard Scudamore and said 'we've got to give them a chance and make sure they are fast-tracked - we don't want to make a scene about it but we will if we need to'.

"He said 'Gordon, I absolutely agree with you'."

Taylor believes the sport can learn from the NFL's 'Rooney Rule', named after Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney, which requires club owners to interview candidates from ethnic minorities for head coaching roles.

Since the introduction of the rule in 2003, the ratio of African-American coaches in the NFL has risen from around 6% to 22%, with Mike Tomlin leading the Steelers to two Super Bowls since his appointment in 2007.

Taylor told 5 Live: "We've got to learn from other sports.

"They saw how many top black gridiron players there were and how few were becoming top coaches. They came in with that rule and it made a difference, without a shadow of a doubt, and has been assimilated into the culture of the NFL."

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