Thursday, December 8, 2022

Video: Women’s football in England and race: some things I have learned and some things I am still learning

This week, the subject of the clear lack of Black and Asian professional women’s footballers in England has come back to the fore. Tim Stillman talks about some of the things he has learned (or that he thinks he has learned) from listening to people with first hand experience of the barriers faced by Black and Asian women and girls playing football, why equality of opportunity is everyone’s problem to try to solve and not being defensive about white privilege.

Here are some pieces Tim recommends reading that delve into some of the obstacles that exist for Black and Asian girls playing football:

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Cygan’sbaldspot

“Who wants to listen the white guy talk about racism” my thoughts exactly. Put your money where your mouth is Tim and give your job up to a woman of colour.

arseblog

No.

Pippa is already one of the presenters here.

Tim speaking about this is important. He is using his platform to talk a key issue.

Also, you obviously didn’t listen beyond the first few seconds.

Cygan’sbaldspot

I watched the whole thing, though it took me three goes due to its cringe level.
Reminded me of a hostage obsequiously begging for release on a random video, before being murdered anyway. Pathetic.

Tim Stillman

We have two women of colour working on our women’s coverage on Arseblog News, in fact I am the only white man who does work on the women’s coverage. But in any case, it’s not about people giving up their jobs, it’s about creating equality of opportunity. You may have also noticed that I am not a female footballer and that is, specifically, the profession we are talking about in this video.

onenil

But a white guy can be an ally, like Tim. Alternatively he can sit on the side lines and sneer at anyone who is brave enough to try and address what is clearly a major issue in the women’s game.

onenil

In case it’s not clear I’m talking to Cygan’sbaldspot.

cygan'sbaldspot

Tim can do what he likes, but you haven’t addressed what I said. Tim talks about the ‘barriers’ faced by non-Whites,
while seemingly ignorant of the fact that he, himself, as a White person, is one of those barriers. If he really believes what he is saying and has conviction in his beliefs, then he should hand over his position over to a woman of colour.

onenil

He’s clearly not ignorant of that fact, he addresses it at length. He is not a barrier himself, he is one person who is pointing out the issue. Just because something hasn’t happened to him doesn’t mean he cannot be against it happening to other people.

Zoe Waterfield

What a ridiculous comment ?

Cygan’sbaldspot

Why? I’m following his theory to its logical conclusion. Some people are going to have to make way.

PB70

Your bullshit zero-sum-game analysis of Tim’s video is exactly why his video is so good. It’s d-bags who come to your ‘logical conclusions’ that hold others back, not those who don’t ‘make way’. No one is asking for anyone else to make way, only to understand the playing field, based on race/ethnicity/sex, is not level. Being white doesn’t make a person a ‘barrier’ – being white (or whatever race) and not understanding the realities of race-based systemic issues, is. Sounds like you feel personally attacked by Tim’s video. Am glad you’re here talking out of your ass as a case… Read more »

Cygan’sbaldspot

Lol, nothing you said is true but sure, just call me names like a child. Try to engage without attacking me as a person. I am bringing logical arguments to deconstruct your bullshit & purely emotional American view of race. If you want to talk about representation, let’s start with the UK government. It’s much more relevant. Indians are 1.5% of the British population yet a former Goldman Sachs banker who is Indian is now PM. Likewise in the failed Truss government, composed of 23 members, only 14 of were ethnic Britons and only 8 of were British men (a… Read more »

Tim Stillman

The video is about women’s football in the UK you absolute clown.

Tim Stillman

Well said.

CarollaMcFoam

I think this is an important point and that it is up to white people, like me, to listen to those impacted and raise their voices. Tim has a platform (as someone who has been a supporter of women’s football for a number of years) to raise these issues and he has done so.

Left Testicle

Nobody is stopping women of colour playing football in this country.

Arse83Gooner

Physically stoppping them, no, probably not. But if you have a system in place where there are more facilities, more girls teams, more progressive coaches etc in the places which have a larger white population then it’s no surprise that there are more adult / professional players from that background.

Left Testicle

For those giving a ‘thumbs down’ who is stopping women of colour playing football?

Zoe Waterfield

Ive noticed that there are always a ‘thumbs down’ on almost every comment? Strange 🤔

Cygan’sbaldspot

Here’s the thing: White people are physically stopping young Black and Asian girls from playing football due to their inherent malevolent racism. We must not rest until there is no White representation in any institution, and until every last European country is minority White, which according to demographic trends is well on course.
Also worth nothing that the writer capitalised ‘Black’ and ‘Asian’ but not the word ‘White’. Why is that? Anti-Whiteness is everywhere in our culture, and it’s disgusting. You’re going to get pushback when you peddle this blood libel.

PB70

Oh no, can see how White people have been treated unfairly. Capitalisation. A real concern. Lets hope you can do a vlog on the issue.

I can smell your fear, it’s lovely.

arseblog

Yeah, so use of the words ‘Blood Libel’ here is out of order. It’s a disgusting, antisemitic trope and I’m sure you know that.

You’re just short of going on about the Great Replacement which is the kind far-right rhetoric which I will absolutely not allow on this site.

Tim did a video about equality, your entire commentary on it has been to push back against – suggesting it’s anti-white. You can take your commentary elsewhere.

Cygan’sbaldspot

Sure thing Andrew. I’ve only been commenting here for like 10 years, and have never broken any of your rules. But go ahead and arbitrarily ban me.

arseblog

It is not arbitrary. If you think I’m going to allow you or anyone else to make reference to a hoax that suggests Jewish people use the blood of Christian boys in rituals, while you skirt around far-right theories, you haven’t understood me or what this site is about for the entirety of those 10 years.

Dan

There are 3 articles linked in this post that may help with your query and should you wish to read further, lots available online for you to read also.

Left Testicle

I’d rather not waste my time on something that doesn’t exist. Thanks. People need to stop playing the victim. If you want to play football, play football. If you’re facing discrimination report it to the relevant authority.

PB70

If you’re facing discrimination report it to the relevant authority.”.

Thanks for the tip, sparky.

Dan

Nah, you’re just not interested reading anything which may highlight what is wrong with your insisting it doesn’t exist.

but on the off chance you might be able to open your mind

https://twitter.com/ThisIsMcCann/status/1590318390144806914?s=20&t=rqDepLla116ivYWFQzRz7g

If you can provide as well referenced and well explained alternative to the above on how it ‘doesn’t exist’ – then I’m sure many would be interested. But you can’t, because you are incorrect.

Tim Stillman

So you CBA to read the articles that set it out but you can be arsed to leave comments demanding people give you explanations that are already given in the content?

Left Testicle

That’s about it. I know the sort of article it’s going to be. White people are racist and it will probably be condescending to women of colour. Candace Owens knows.

arseblog
Tim Stillman

Saying you’re not reading something because you ‘know the sort of article it’s going to be’ is, very literally, wilful ignorance. You’ve made your mind up about things you haven’t read or watched and you’re saying, very explicitly and overtly, that you’ve made an assumption and you’re not willing to have it challenged. Leaving aside that these things are the epitome of why bias (conscious and unconscious) exist but it also basically tells everyone ‘I am ignorant and very committed to staying that way, thank you very much.’ So if you’ve served any purpose in the comments section (debatable) it… Read more »

Left Testicle

Hey Tim, I thought I would take your advice and watch the video. Well I made it to two minutes and it was exactly what I thought it would be. An apologetic white guy being offended on somebody else’s behalf. I gave it a go. 🙂

Tim Stillman

The fact that you don’t understand the difference between “I made it two minutes” and “I gave it a go” (you didn’t and you told us you didn’t, as a badge of honour) reveals what a miniscule amount of intellect we are dealing with with your posts. You are ignorant, which is one thing but you’ve convinced yourself this is a good thing.

Left Testicle

Also, I didn’t ‘demand’ anything. I just have a different opinion to yours.

PB70

You need women of colour to be physically stopped from playing football for you to get the point of Tim’s video? No one is gonna be able to help you out with that one, dullard. Sounds like the video struck a nerve for some of you right-wing nuts.

Do people stop you from using your mind to conceptualise a topic, instead of your one testicle?

Left Testicle

I have two testicles PB70. It’s just a moniker, but thanks for taking an interest in my testes.

Zoe Waterfield

I agree. I think the best players will get picked regardless.

Cygan’sbaldspot

They do. Football is a meritocracy. For Tim’s theory to be true he would have to explain why many European men’s national teams (including England) are full of non-White players. France for example only has 2 or 3 White starters. This was not the case as recently as the 90s.
If you look at the England women’s team which is 100% White and you have an issue with it, then you have a problem.

Peter Story Teller

Are you sure? Nikita Parris, Demi Stokes, Jess Carter to name just three current players! Eni Aluko and Dan Carter until recently. I agree perhaps not proportional representation but certainly not 100% white! It occurs to me that if players have the will to succeed then they do regardless of their backgrounds. In this current world of diversity and inclusion we appear to assume that if a group of people doing whatever they are doing is not completely representative of the country’s demographic for some reason this is racism. Has anyone considered that perhaps non-white women in the main are… Read more »

Cygan’sbaldspot

I meant the starting 11.

Tim Stillman

I reference the England men’s team many times in the video, the point is this is something that is a particular issue in English women’s football for young girls of colour and many of the reasons for it are well documented (the closure of regional talent centres in more ethnically diverse areas, the fact that you absolutely have to have a car- and a parent that can drive you- to get to England’s training HQ as a youth player, the Mark Sampson affair among other factors). The France women’s team clearly does not have this issue, for example and that… Read more »

Goonersince55

I’d just like to thank you, Tim, for approaching this is a thoughtful, reflective way.

Hurensohn

Please take this comment as it’s intended, as a genuine question. The black and ethnic population of the UK is roughly 5-10% if I round up, yet this % in the mens national team squad is roughly 25% and even this is lower than it usually is. If this isn’t due to culture, as in young black men like to play football, then what is it? What about the population of Asian men in the UK vs the population of Asian men playing cricket in the UK? It’s clearly predominantly a question of culture in my opinion but I’d love… Read more »

Peter Story Teller

You make a valid point! The assumption has been made here that because football is the “national sport” in the UK anyone living in the UK should naturally be drawn to it. Surely, if, for example, you are of Asian background growing up in a predominently Asian community you are more likely to end up playing cricket than football since football as we know it is a minor sport in their country of origin. It is not just football, is it? What about rugby, swimming etc. etc? As I said earlier, you cannot force inclusion. The potential participants have to… Read more »

Greg

Just as a fact check on ethnicity: the overall UK population is 13% non-white, but the older population skews whiter. The generation now playing professional football (i.e. roughly 16-34) is 19% non-white. To your point about whether it’s cultural: well yes, it kind of is, but isn’t that part of the problem? Some of the barriers to entry are defined as cultural and then that becomes self-reinforcing. South Asian men are expected to be interested in cricket, so South Asian kids feel safe taking it up compared with football. But even beyond that, as Yorkshire Cricket Club have proved, even… Read more »

Hurensohn

Sorry I wrote black and ethnic in my initial comment but should have wrote black and asian in response to Tim’s video. As per your response though non-white doesn’t equate to black or asian, which is still between 5-10% if rounded up. If the reason is cultural that doesn’t necessarily mean that is a problem. If young asian kids prefer to play cricket then they can, it’s not something that needs correcting, just as I chose to play football. If something specifically is stopping them then we have something to work on but seeing lower numbers of black girls vs… Read more »

Tim Stillman

Again, I’m speaking second hand here, but if you look at the communities where pro footballers are usually drawn from, the number of ethnic minorities is significantly larger than the national average. I don’t wish to pretend that racial bias doesn’t exist in the assessment of footballers (look at how Kane is refereed compared to Zaha and Saka!) but it’s, I think, probably slightly more merit based in an environment where coaches are sacked if they don’t get results quickly. And representation has an impact on the next generation too. When it comes to Asian players, I have fewer ‘theories’… Read more »

Hurensohn

I guess what I struggle with is the numbers being used to suggest there is a problem. It just doesn’t work that way, they’re indicators but they don’t give you the whole picture. If you say lots of young black girls are complaining they aren’t accepted into football clubs we clearly have a problem. If you say there aren’t any black girls at the local power league that could be anything or nothing. You say it yourself in the above reply “if you look at the communities where pro footballers are usually drawn from”.. So specific parts of society lend… Read more »

Eve

In England Even before you get to any kind of access barriers to black women playing football, you need to deal with the facts that black women prefer athletics and in particular sprinting to football. As a black woman that was my love, even though there were other sporting choices. Maybe in France it is different. They don’t have many world class sprinters. We have Dina Asher Smith, Daryl Nita et al. My point is that black girls and women in England have to like/love football first more than other sports like athletics, otherwise you still find them all down… Read more »

Tim Stillman

Interesting, what do you think the reasons are behind those preferences?

Tim Stillman

Other then having demonstrative rolemodels? I wonder whether there’s a reason those role models exist in those sports but less so in football?

Jamie Payne

Thank you Tim a very thought provoking piece.

ArmsAndEther

This is on point, Tim – I appreciate your perspective and bringing up a topic that too many are afraid to address. As a “person of color”, I appreciate your willingness to do this work and raise the issue.

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