Published: Wed, January 10, 2018
Sci-tech | By Carrie Guzman

FA to adopt Rooney Rule in appointing future England managers

FA to adopt Rooney Rule in appointing future England managers

The "Rooney Rule" is a policy drawn from the NFL in American football that requires the league's 32 teams to interview BAME candidates for head coaching and senior roles.

The Rooney Rule was named after campaigning Pittsburgh Steelers chairman Dan Rooney, who died a year ago.

"It comes in the wake of an extremely damaging six months for the image of the governing body", says The Guardian.

Since the job was created 72 years ago, every manager of the England men's football team has been white.

FA chief executive Martin Glenn confirmed a black, Asian or minority ethnic (BAME) candidate will be interviewed for all England coaching jobs in the future as the FA seeks to improve inclusivity.

"What we're seeing now is more BAME players and what we want to do is make sure that post their playing career there's an opportunity for them to carry on contributing and that they feel the FA is also for them".

They include new targets for levels of representation of women and people from BAME backgrounds throughout the organisation from the ruling council and board down to all national coaching groups. There is now one black manager of a Premier League team - Chris Hughton at Brighton.

Football League clubs had introduced their own version of the rule on January 1 and Glenn believes it is the duty of the FA to set an example.

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The FA issued a public apology in October to Aluko and her fellow England women's worldwide Drew Spence after comments deemed "discriminatory on grounds of race" were made to them by the team's former coach Mark Sampson.

In November, Sports People's Think Tank said 22 of 482 coaching roles in top four divisions held by BAME coaches.

'It's recognising that there are significant differences in women's elite sport and men's, and one of the things that really caught us out in the case of Eni Aluko was that we were slow to realise that; because effectively the women's team are like employees of the FA because of the contracts'. But I think more subtly we did not have the right climate in place for people to feel they could raise their concerns easily.

But what did he mean when he suggested women had a lower tolerance for "banter"?

Kick It Out chair Lord Ouseley added: "I looked to the Football Association to give leadership on the matter of equality, inclusion and cohesion and I now expect those in positions of power across professional football, along with the FA, to drive forward the highest standards of activity in order to achieve these objectives which will benefit everyone who participates in the game".

The prize fund for the FA Cup will be doubled from next season, while the debt on rebuilding Wembley will be paid off by 2024, several years early, saving £2-3m a year in interest payments.

Regarding changes made to the FA's whistle-blowing procedures, Glenn said Aluko had made a contribution.

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