Former Gunner Rachel Yankey is part of a scheme which aims to encourage more women to become football coaches.
Yankey has been coaching alongside her playing career, helping to coach at schools in her down time. Therefore, it stands to reason that the 38-year-old is the driving force behind a new scheme which encourages and helps women to earn their UEFA B badge.
“We’ve got the 50 candidates ready to start, so we can look forward to getting them on their coaching courses and seeing them start working in clubs,” she told Starsport.
“Obviously the goal for the campaign it to encourage more women to get into coaching football, to help the 50 candidates get their UEFA B license and support them on their journey.
“It’s also important to get them working with clubs, so they can build experience and get qualified. Really, it’s just to show to people that they are opportunities for females out there [to get into coaching] and that there must diversity in football, which is a positive thing.”
Betfair’s ‘Fairer Game Initiative’ aims to get more women into the dugouts, not just at a grass roots level but at the bigger teams as well.
At the moment, the industry is heavily populated by men. While that’s because fewer women train for their coaching badges, you have to wonder why this is. Could it be down to them assuming that they’ll never make it? That’s what Yankey is trying to change.
The winger had two spells at Arsenal. Firstly, from 1996-2000 when she signed for Fulham, and then again from 2005-2016. Yankey made 151 appearances for the Gunners upon her return and scored 43 goals.
She’s also been capped 129 times for England and netted 19 for them. Yankey recently became a mother, which explains her break from playing.
To have a career spanning three decades, you have to have drive, especially if you’re a woman in a male-dominated industry. Therefore, I imagine she’ll do just fine with her new scheme.