Doncaster Rovers’ Darren Moore hopes global focus can tackle lack of BAME bosses

DONCASTER ROVERS manager Darren Moore is ‘quietly confident’ that the heightened focus on black and ethnic minority issues will prove the catalyst to resolving the lack of BAME managers in football.

Thousands of people have taken part in anti-racism marches across the United Kingdom following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25, with many influential BAME figures in this country speaking out in support of the Black Lives Matter movement and calling for changes in society.

Earlier this week, England forward Raheem Sterling said that progress in football’s own fight against racism would only arrive when more black players become managers.

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Moore is chairperson of the Premier League’s BAME advisory group and one of only six managers from the 91 league clubs from a BAME background – just 6.6 per cent of the total.

Darren Moore. Picture Bruce RollinsonDarren Moore. Picture Bruce Rollinson
Darren Moore. Picture Bruce Rollinson

The disparity is underlined by the fact that a quarter of players in the Premier League and EFL are from a BAME background.

In that regard, Moore hopes that the events of the past week will be a game-changer.

He said: “I am really hopeful and quietly confident that because the whole world is talking about it, there has never been a better time for all football’s governing bodies to really address these things.

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“Hopefully, we can reach some decisions that everyone feels part of. We have made strides, but have a long, long way to go.

Doncaster manager Darren Moore. (
Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe
)Doncaster manager Darren Moore. (
Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe
Doncaster manager Darren Moore. ( Picture: Jonathan Gawthorpe )

“The position I have got in the Premier League Advisory Group means we are addressing these things because the numbers are alarming. It shows the higher you go up, there is a lesser lack of opportunity. The facts and figures are there for all to see.”

As one of just a handful of BAME managers, Moore is proud to serve as an inspiration for others to follow, but admits he will cherish the day when he is purely recognised for his coaching abilities and not just his ethnic background.

“The fact we are talking about me as one of the few BAME managers, almost like one of the pioneers of the game and we are in 2020 tells me that there’s work to be done,” Moore continued.

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“I understand that I might be looked upon as someone leading the way, but it should be a case of looking at me as a young British coach in the same way as others.

Doncaster manager Darren Moore (Picture: Marie Caley)Doncaster manager Darren Moore (Picture: Marie Caley)
Doncaster manager Darren Moore (Picture: Marie Caley)

“What I want to be recognised as is Darren Moore, the young, up-and-coming British coach representing all coaches.

“There are some top black coaches out there and people I look up in a heartbeat. They have a lot to offer and it is criminal if there are not more in the game.

“There are people desperate to get back into the game as they’ve served it so well over the years and want to offer something.”

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While the ‘Rooney Rule’, which requires clubs to interview at least one BAME candidate when hiring a manager, has been cited as one way to assist aspiring managers and coaches, it is only in operation for positions in the Football Association and EFL and not the Premier League.

Some view it as tokenism, with Kick It Out head of development Troy Townsend expressing concerns it does not carry enough weight and ex-Manchester United forward Dwight Yorke recently describing the policy as “a joke”.

Moore added: “It is only part of it. It has been accepted by the EFL clubs, but not the Premier League. It has got to be an all-round decision which everyone shares and buys into.

“I got my opportunity by being in the structure of West Brom. I was given an opportunity to answer an SOS call after Alan Pardew left and was given the job. In that short space of time, what catapulted me into management was that we got results against Mourinho, Benitez, Klopp and Pochettino.

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“When I left, we were in the play-offs. It gave me the chance.

“There are a lot of good, top BAME coaches. But how else are you going to know if the opportunities don’t come?”

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