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Name Sami Mokbel
Gender Male
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Job xxxx Sport Journalist
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Media Daily Mail

2020 06 14 Retrieve

[Diversity makes clubs stronger] I think the key to this is leadership and transparency. Football is a meritocracy. If you’re a good player you’re going to be in the starting XI. If you’re not as good as the players in the starting XI then you’re going to be on the bench, no matter your colour, creed or belief system. But at the higher end of the game - managerial level, board level - there is certainly scope to introduce something like the Rooney Rule. If you’ve got an ethnically diverse work system, surely that makes you stronger, that makes you ready for the contemporary world. I certainly think in newspapers we should be looking at that and football-wide I don’t see why we shouldn’t be introducing a system like the Rooney Rule. We’ve got such a massive pool of black players. The talent is there. It’s about trying to harness that talent and making sure those guys see a path into Premier League and FA boardrooms, into coaching and being a manager. And it is about making sure those guys don’t step away from the game. That will take leadership

2020 06 14b Retrieve

[Some clubs rely on home crowds] I’m also intrigued by Tottenham. It seems clear to be that Jose Mourinho is sensing a real opportunity that something that was previously slipping away, if he could take three points off Manchester United in the first game, they could be right back in it. He probably feels his players are fit and ready to go, and I suspect they’ve coped well with lockdown and I suspect they’ll hit the ground running. One thing I’m looking forward to is the behind-closed-doors issue, and how that will affect teams going forward. A lot of clubs, particularly down the bottom, are reliant on their home form, leaning on crowd support which isn’t going to be there anymore. Will players feel more relaxed and able to express themselves more without the pressurised environment? That’s one of the things I’m most looking forward to seeing, the dynamic and how it plays out

2020 07 19 Retrieve

[Sami Mokbel claims a consolation phase targeted at securing reduced attendances is already under way between football clubs and the government] We know we’re not going to have any games with fans between now and the end of the season, which is a week away. There is potentially an opportunity for the Community Shield, that has been pencilled in for late August, to be used as a test event. We will have a clearer idea then of its success and the potentiality of having fans in place at stadiums for the opening week of next season’s Premier League.

A lot of that will rest on tests during the close season at snooker, County Championship cricket and horse racing, but there is certainly will from the Premier League and the government to have fans back at a capacity of 25 to 50 per cent if stadiums open by the opening week. There are a lot of issues still to be resolved, namely how tickets will be distributed among fans who will all want to be there when the doors re-open. There are going to be a lot of disappointed supporters who are going to be left behind. Transport and how you ferry fans who may not want to use public transport to games may be an issue, as well as the arrival and departure times of fans, which may have to staggered. That will be a lengthy process for which there is not a lot of time to implement it. Policing fans while they’re at their seats to ensure they are socially distancing appears easy enough, where the problems occur is on the concourse. How can you guarantee people won’t congregate in large groups as they usually would ahead of the game? That is where the problems lie and where the government will lean on Premier League clubs to ensure that

Clubs have started planning now in conjunction with the Premier League, consultation processes are under way between clubs and fan groups with a view to formulating a plan in the coming weeks. It’s moving at a rapid pace, but it is a really positive boost for the Premier League, supporters and certainly for clubs, who have been without matchday revenue for a long time