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Young Asian males: social exclusion and social injustice in British professional football?

McGuire, Brendon and Monks, K. and Halsall, Robert (2001) Young Asian males: social exclusion and social injustice in British professional football? Sport in society, 4 (3). pp. 65-80. ISSN 1461-0981

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Abstract

The disproportionately low number of Asian Heritage professional soccer players in Britain is a matter that has been increasingly noted within the game. Indeed, comparisons are now being made between players of Afro-Caribbean Heritage 'breaking in' 35 years ago and the current lack of Asian Heritage players. Through use of questionnaires, this research focuses on the perceptions of Youth/Community Development officers at UK professional football clubs and Asian Heritage males who are involved in playing the game. Comparisons are drawn in particular with the Bains and Patel report (1996) which remains probably the most significant discussion of the issue from the last decade. Findings suggest that there are some encouraging signs of progress in some clubs and that the two groups share views on certain barriers to Asian Heritage players entering professional soccer. However, they remain very polarized in important respects, not least concerning the prevalence and impact of racism.

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