British rapper Stormzy aims to address racial disparity in football as he commenced a new project called Merky FC which will start in January 2023.
Stormzy, the rapper has partnered with several well-known companies, including Manchester United, Fulham, Adidas, and Sky Sports, to support his cause.
Stormzy’s calls for change and greater diversity are still at the forefront of the game, and the numbers and statistics still make for sobering reading.
The goal of Merky FC is to open up a wide range of multi-year, paid professional options in football. The initiative will start in January of next year, and its partners are prepared to participate and provide positions in a range of industries.
Merky FC, a brand-new initiative that intends to “help level the playing field by delivering off-pitch chances to young Black people” within the sport, has been introduced by Stormzy in collaboration with Adidas Football.
After a new study, commissioned by Adidas, showed that only 6.7% of senior football positions were held by Black or persons of mixed descent, the revelation was made. In an interview with Sky Sports, Stormzy called this “embarrassing.”
In an interview with Sky Sports, Stormzy stated: “The figures are terrible. Visibility, in my opinion, is really important. Even as children, we never saw any black managers or people of color in the media.
“So I think when Ian Wright and Thierry Henry come along, we know we can kick a ball. We’ve always known that. But in terms of the jobs and the other positions in the industry, we don’t see our representation, and representation is crucial,” Stormzy stated. It’s not always simple to believe something when you can’t see it.”
Since BAME candidates are rarely appointed to managing positions in the football league, Patrick Vieira is currently the only black manager in the Premier League.
The Football Association’s second annual report on the Football Leadership Diversity Code, which revealed how six out of eight pledged targets are not being met by English clubs, also coincides with the opening of Merky FC.
It was discovered that there was a disappointing trend in the percentage of Black, Asian, or mixed heritage coaches hired by men’s clubs, which was 15.6%, below the target of 25%.
In an interview with Sky Sports, Stormzy elaborated on his plans for Merky FC, stating that “seeing more young Black people in these roles, more black people in positions of power away from being on the pitch would be a success.”
Observing it flourish, expand, and invite more people to join in, providing those opportunities for young people.
Stormzy went on to discuss his ambition to “keep the ball rolling” and create “infrastructure and real change” that allows future generations to be “stronger and more empowered.”
“The Premier League fully supports the Football Leadership Diversity Code as we collectively work to achieve greater diversity across all areas of the game,” chief executive Richard Masters said.
Over the past two years, the code has represented an important commitment from across football to tackle inequality and create long-term change.
Merky FC is a multi-year partnership, due to kick off when the first career placements begin in early 2023.
Stormzy expresses the hope that Merky FC will encourage and assist more individuals from a variety of backgrounds to be successful in the football profession.