British South Asian Coaches Need Better Opportunities, Says Charlton Women Assistant Riteesh Mishra | Football news

Charlton’s Riteesh Mishra is proud to represent British South Asian coaches in elite football, but says there is still work to be done to create a level playing field in football.

Mishra is Karen Hills’ assistant at the Charlton Women’s Championship, which makes him the highest-ranked South Asian coach in elite play in England.

Chorley’s first-team coach and fellow British South Asian Irfan Kawri said Sky Sports News earlier this year you need a “thick skin” to do as a coach in the English game. Mishra agrees and says he needed resilience and persistence in his coaching journey.

“I am very proud, for my last name and for myself, to be able to represent the community in women’s football and elite football in general,” Mishra told S.ky Sports News.

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Highlights of the Women’s Super League match between Manchester United and Chelsea

“On the other hand, it’s pretty disappointing that there haven’t been others – especially at the top of the game – who have made it through. We’re starting to see good progress, and j ‘just hope I talk to you can give young coaches the idea that you can make a profession in professional football.

“It’s tough. But we can see there’s a lot of work behind the scenes to help coaches like me get to the top – and then it’s about our quality, our resilience and our efforts to trying to stay there once you get into those jobs, that’s really important. “

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Chorley’s first team coach Irfan Kawri wants greater engagement to enable diverse communities to improve their understanding of pathways to football

Mishra was one of the most promising players at Nottingham Forest academy when his career was severely cut short as a teenager due to injury. But rather than giving up the game altogether, Mishra turned to training, eventually joining Charlton in 2013.

When asked if there were any South Asian coaches that he could admire and try to emulate in his early years of training, he said: “The short answer is no. Coaches, managers , players – my role models were all people who did ‘not look like me.

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“It was quite difficult because a lot of times you go through times in professional football, whether as a player or as a coach, where you need someone who maybe really understands where you are from. come and what you experience.

“It was difficult, but at the same time it helped me to develop a lot of resilience. I was forced to expand my network and to be comfortable in professional football – it also has me helped grow. It’s tough and you need people to work with you and support you on this journey. And I want to do that for those who are going through the system now. “

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Brentford board member Preeti Shetty told Sky Sports News she hopes her recent appointment gives South Asian women hope they can be who they want to be.

Mishra says he feels lucky to be working in an environment where his talent can flourish, and hopes stakeholders at all levels can correct a historical imbalance and unite to tackle South Asian under-representation. in the game.

“It is about equal opportunity, to be treated as an equal and to feel equal,” he said. “It’s really difficult in professional football when you’re in the top flight.

“There is a lot of pressure but I’m very lucky at a club like Charlton where I feel valued every day, it’s a club that I love. I’ve been here for a long time, I feel very close to a lot of people here and the values ​​of the club are kind of deeply ingrained in me.

Sanjay Bhandari at the press conference at Pinsent Masons, London.
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Kick It Out chairman Sanjay Bhandari told Sky Sports News last year that the under-representation of British South Asians in the game was “football’s biggest statistical anomaly”

“But as far as it is about me as a South Asian proving my worth and other South Asians proving that you are good enough, we also need people who are decision makers, who are not. our community to understand that we need extra help, extra support, and we need these opportunities.

“We might need an extra helping hand to get there, so as much as it is up to us to prove ourselves to South Asians. It is also to those in key decision-making positions in the sport of elite to really think about diversity and inclusion and make sure everyone has an equal opportunity to lead positions and academies in the senior setup.

“And then if you’re good enough, hopefully you have the same chance of getting an interview and getting a job. And then it’s about staying there and you know, you can stay there.”

British South Asians in football

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