'Not quite right' – Chelsea boss Lampard contests Sterling's individual comparison with BAME managers


Frank Lampard says that he supports Raheem Sterling's fight for equality in football, but doesn't necessarily agree with the fact that his own rise in management was used in an individual comparison.

Sterling recently discussed the lack of minority coaches at the top level of football in the wake of ongoing protests for racial equality as part of the Black Lives Matter movement.

As part of that discussion, Sterling pointed to four former England stars, Frank Lampard, Steven Gerrard, Sol Campbell and Ashley Cole, while discussing their coaching journeys.

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Gerrard and Lampard are currently managers at historic clubs in Rangers and Chelsea, respectively.

Campbell, on the other hand, has worked with both Macclesfield and Southend, while Cole is currently in charge of Chelsea's Under-15s.

In Sterling's eyes, Lampard and Gerrard's rapid rise to big management positions should be compared with the difficulties faced by their former England team-mates, who have had to take significantly more modest paths.

But Lampard says its important to not look at individual cases such as his own, although he admitted that there is still much work to be done when it comes to diversifying those in charge of top-level clubs.

"I think there is certainly an argument," Lampard said. "I think we're moving forwards and I think we can move forward more quickly, where [black] players are getting equal opportunities if they move into management.

"Not just players, but also young coaches who come into the game. The FA do a lot of good work, I've just finished my pro licence, it was very diverse, it was very open. That needs to be encouraged, if there's anything we can do to ensure everyone gets an equal opportunity in the paths towards management, then it needs to be done.

"The numbers suggest that needs to be done. But with Raheem, the individual comparison, when you don't have the detail of each person's pathway, I felt it wasn't quite right.

"Again, I'll level that out slightly, because I want to say that Raheem Sterling as a player, and as a person and what he's stood up for over the last two years, I think has been fantastic."

Sterling's Manchester City will face Lampard's Chelsea on Thursday as players will continue to wear shirts with "Black Lives Matter" patches on the sleeve.

The trip to Stamford Bridge comes just 18 months after Sterling was racially abused at the stadium, with the winger becoming a prominent voice in the battle against racism ever since. 

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