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It’s Time Scottish Football Embraced The Rooney Rule

Date: 22nd June 2020


The Black Lives Matter protests all across the world have shown us that our society is still not truly equal. 

Now is the time, when we still have no football in Scotland, for Scottish football to reflect and ask difficult questions of it’s self.

That includes asking if the Scottish game can be more diverse?

 I believe it can be. 

I don’t think we have enough people from a BAME (Black, Asian, and Ethnic Minority) background within the heart of our game. 

Whilst it’s great that Alex Dyer has been given the Kilmarnock managerial job on a permanent basis and that the SFA have Dyer and Steven Reid working alongside Scotland manager Steve Clarke, I don’t think we have enough faces of colour in our dugouts. 

Former Hibs and Derby County player Kevin Harper went down to the lowest tier to prove himself as a decent boss at Albion Rovers but unfortunately couldn’t agree a new deal with the Lanarkshire club. Hopefully he will get a chance at a higher level sometime in the near future. 

I would urge the SPFL and it’s member clubs to look at introducing the Rooney Rule, in where football sides go through a proper interview process when they are looking for a new manager and in that process they try their upmost to interview a person of BAME. 

In Scotland, I feel our football clubs are too short term in their thinking and all too often will hire the same old faces. By opening up a transparent interviewing process we could find new managers and coaches coming through and more diverse dugouts. 

It shouldn’t stop at managers, we should also be looking to bring in more BAME coaches at all levels within football. If we don’t give a certain section of our society a chance, then we aren’t as welcoming as we claim to be.

The SFA could help in this regard by offering more places to people of colour on their coaching badge courses.

I would also like to see Scottish clubs doing more when it comes to bringing in diverse faces in the board room and in football administration positions. We have a few more female faces in top positions in the boardroom but we could have more and again the same goes for BAME people too.  

I do believe that Scottish football stands against racism and prejudice but I also think that actions speak louder than words. This is the right time to implement longstanding changes that can give us a more diverse and equal game! 

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