LONDON (Reuters) - The Football Association will adopt a version of the “Rooney Rule” when appointing future England managers by interviewing at least one applicant from a black, Asian or minority ethnic (BAME) background.
FA chief executive Martin Glenn said on Tuesday that a BAME candidate would be interviewed for all England coaching jobs in the future as part of plans aimed at improving inclusivity within English soccer’s governing body.
Glenn told the BBC that the decision sent out a message that the “FA is for all”.
“The Rooney rule is to make sure that provided the candidate has the right level of technical qualifications... on the shortlist for the England manager’s job in the future there will be one candidate from a BAME background,” Glenn said.
“What it will say is the opportunity to have a career beyond playing is something that the FA is serious about promoting.”
The Rooney Rule, named after former NFL diversity committee chairman Dan Rooney, was introduced in the NFL in 2003 and obliged clubs to interview at least one minority candidate for every senior head coach role.
Glenn also said the FA would make it easier for players and staff to air grievances and that he intended to oversee attempts to change the culture around the England women’s team following allegations of race discrimination by Eniola Aluko.
The FA issued a public apology in October to Aluko and her fellow England women’s international Drew Spence after comments deemed “discriminatory on grounds of race” were made to them by the team’s former coach Mark Sampson.
That incident led to a British government hearing in which Glenn and FA chairman Greg Clarke were questioned about the FA’s culture.
Reporting by Toby Davis, editing by Ed Osmond