'We need more individuals such as Raheem Sterling, who will fight for the truth and stand for who they are.' Picture: Reuters
'We need more individuals such as Raheem Sterling, who will fight for the truth and stand for who they are.' Picture: Reuters

'Black Liver Matter ' ... The time for action is now

By Minenhle Mkhize Time of article published Jun 23, 2020

Share this article:

CONVERSATIONS about "white privilege" and lack of black advancement are always sensitive, but a must if we are to change the world.

It is a pity that in 2020 we are still talking about inequality. It doesn’t matter in which spheres of life they are and we can’t run away from the fact that it is still there.

It takes guts to raise these issues. Manchester City's star striker Raheem Sterling asked some relevant questions in a recent interview with the BBC on this topic.

We need more individuals like Sterling, who will fight for the truth and stand for who they are. The talented Sterling showed that he is a man of intergrity and honesty. He spoke his mind.

Normally he dazzles on the pitch with his Man of the Match performances, but this time he went the extra mile, producing an equally stunning performance off the field in that insightful interview.

I really admired his example where he compared the post-playing careers of Ashley Cole, Sol Campbell, Steve Gerrard and Frank Lampard.

These are all former greats of the game. They all represented England with distinction in major international tournaments, and after retiring from the beautiful game they decided to further their knowledge by studying coaching.

They all got their badges to manage at the highest level, although Cole and Campbell - the two non-white coaches among the quartet - are yet to get jobs at the highest level, while Lampard and Gerrard are already making their way up. Lampard is the incumbent manager of London giants Chelsea. He took over the coaching reins at the start of the season and has done well.

Obviously this isn’t about colour. It shouldn’t be about that. It should be about ability. But it does raise the questions why black coaches, who played the game at the highest level and equipped themselves academically, don’t get the same opportunities as their white counterparts. Gerrard, meanwhile, is at the helm of Scottish powerhouse Rangers.

The lack of black presentation in the English Premier League at managerial level clearly shows that the beautiful game has a long way to go in order to see equality.

But this isn’t only happening abroad. In South Africa we are still celebrating Pitso Mosimane as the only black coach to win the league in the PSL era.

What does that tell you? You don’t have to look far to find inequality as it is happening right in front of us.

That’s where racism begins, and until we fight these issues, we will continue to complain about them. I really don’t buy this business of wearing T-shirts emblazoned with ‘Black lives matters’. For me, that is a scam.

How many times have we seen Fifa releasing statements stating that they condemn racism? Has that worked? No!

Instead, the problem has escalated. You know why? Because we don’t take action. The rules of football are forever changing but you’ve never, ever seen a discussion about potentially docking points from clubs or banning fans who abuse players racially.

At least there are people like Sterling who are brave to talk about these issues openly.

But it is not too late. The world can still change if we only take serious actions against these issues.

We are tired of condemning now - it's time for action.


Share this article: