Sol Campbell hopes Black Lives Matter movement leads to 'proper progress'
Campbell hopes Black Lives Matter movement will result in something tangible, rather than fading away, but feels this time "it's different"
By Blake Welton & Pete Graves
Last Updated: 24/06/20 11:39pm
Sol Campbell says the Black Lives Matter movement has seen a "ripple-effect" of change across the globe.
The death of George Floyd at the hands of the police in Minnesota has sparked a worldwide push for racial equality, which has been echoed by all Premier League clubs and players since football's resumption.
Campbell hopes the movement will result in something tangible, rather than fading away, but feels this time "it's different".
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The former Arsenal, Tottenham and England defender exclusively told Sky Sports News: "I just hope it continues, it continues into the boardrooms, in all sorts of boardrooms, the media boardrooms, the football boardrooms, the government.
"People have to continue the conversation and it has to go to another level for real change to happen, and it has to be consistent.
"It has to be well thought out, and it has to be a collaboration. Everybody has to be around the table.
"I hope there is proper progress and I hope people listen, I hope people will actually take it on board and not go back to their old ways of thinking once it's all over.
"That's my worry that people will forget. Start some schemes, start some initiatives and then it just fades away and everybody slots into the same way again.
"I hope it's not that. I feel it's different because there's a lot of people talking about it."
'England players changing face of football'
Campbell praised the new generation of England footballers for using their high-profile platforms to change the face of football during the coronavirus pandemic.
Whether it is Raheem Sterling and Trent Alexander-Arnold speaking out on Black Lives Matter, Marcus Rashford lobbying the government on free school meals or Jordan Henderson raising funds for the NHS, Campbell believes a powerful message has been sent out throughout society.
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The two-time Premier League winner said: "They've all used their platform in such a fantastic way. That's what it's all about, be positive and people will be positively changed.
"These guys have been doing so many wonderful things in this lockdown period, the way things are and how they want to change the face of football.
"Hats off to those guys, I commend them and really, they're fantastic and they just have to continue."
'Encouragement key for future black coaches'
Campbell, who currently manages Southend and harbours hopes of managing at the highest level one day, hopes the positive change will also lead to more management opportunities for black candidates going forward.
Currently there are just six managers across England's 91 Premier League and EFL clubs from a BAME background, which has led to calls for English football to address the lack of black representation in positions of power.
The 45-year-old believes not only is a clear pathway needed for players to consider management in their post-playing career but a gentle nudge in the right direction.
"Ask them, 'have you thought about going into coaching and being a manager? I think you might be good at that. I'll support you,'" Campbell said.
"That's what you need, people actually saying, 'go for it! You can do it! Why not? Have a go'.
"'You never know, if you work hard, this club might give you a chance to whatever? I'm putting a good word in for you'. That kind of stuff. It comes from encouragement. Encouragement is key."
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