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FA's rising star Judan Ali keen for more Asian representation in football

PUBLISHED: 10:08 02 October 2012

Judan Ali with England manager Roy Hodgson

Judan Ali with England manager Roy Hodgson

Archant

An Asian coach from Tower Hamlets who has made it onto the FA bursary scheme is urging Asian families to encourage their children to get involved in football.

Judan Ali, who recently met England manager Roy Hodgson while helping coach England’s under-17s at the new St George’s Park complex, is currently completing his FA badges, having first coached as a teenager growing up off Brick Lane.

He has worked extensively in India and has recently been linked with the vacant manager’s job at Blackburn Rover.

Discussing racism in the sport, he said: “It’s a big debate. People don’t want to get involved because of what they went through.

“When I was trying to make it as a player I knew hundreds of Asian kids who were great but were never given the contract. Now there is racism, but it’s not as bad as it was.”

He now believes more needs to be done to facilitate a greater involvement in the sport within Asian communities such as those in East London.

“Asian parents need to be educated in that respect. The government needs to get us access to Asian parents and work in collaboration with schools to try to get an understanding of the challenges invovled.

“We’ve just had the Olympics, and we need to do something in East London, perhaps at the Olympic village, where coaches like myself can attract parents and get people involved in the game.”

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