No Room For Racism

Nevin: Coach scheme provides vital experience

17 Mar 2022

Aspiring coaches on the Professional Player to Coach Scheme hear from West Ham and QPR role models

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Young coaches were recently given the chance to learn from inspiring role models working in football as part of their development on the Professional Player to Coach Scheme (PPCS).

West Ham United first-team coach Paul Nevin and Queens Park Rangers technical director Chris Ramsey passed on some of their knowledge and experience to the two cohorts of participants.

"Historically the data shows there's not the same representation off the pitch, coaching, administrative and leadership roles, as there is playing participation," Nevin says.

Increasing opportunities

"We need to shift the balance to give black coaches more opportunities to show what they can do, prepare them better for those opportunities when they come.

"We are arming these coaches with not only the qualifications but this scheme allows them to get the experience as well, which is a key component."

The PPCS is delivered in partnership with the Professional Footballers' Association Charity and the EFL and aims to increase the number of black and Asian players who transition into full-time coaching roles in the professional game.

It provides up to six coaches per season with a 23-month intensive work placement at EFL clubs with bursaries provided to each participant via the club.

Full-time role

One of the participants who has come through the scheme is Jon-Paul Pittman, who at the start of this year began a full-time role at League Two side Forest Green Rovers as an Academy Professional Development Phase coach.

"I'd like to think that the scheme has accelerated my growth and development," he says.

"Because I've had so much support constantly, so many people to lean on, mentors, without it I might not be stood on the touchline or the technical area at Forest Green as a full-time coach because I'd still be unrecognisable in the game."

The PPCS is part of the Premier League's work in improving diversity and coaching pathways for black, Asian and other minority ethnic groups in football, as laid out in its No Room for Racism Action Plan and Elite Coaching Plan.

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