The Football Black List – First-ever LGBT+ Award



The Football Black List, founded in 2008 by sports journalists Leon Mann and Rodney Hinds, highlights positive influencers from the Black community in the sport.

Now an annual celebration the Football Black List celebrates black excellence across the world of football and it highlights and showcases the different roles that black people play across the football industry.

A panel of experts from the Black community and football industry vote independently on nominations made by the public to determine who makes the list. The panel included representation from the Premier League, The Football Association, Professional Footballers’ Association, League Managers Association, English Football League, PGMOL, FARE, BCOMS and Kick It Out. 

This years list features key LGBTQ+ figures such as Annette Nelson and Crystal Palace women’s goalkeeper Chloe Morgan. Alongside these inspirational LGBTQ+ candidates is national hero Marcus Rashford.


Manchester United and England star, Marcus Rashford, has today been named on the Football Black List – an initiative celebrating the most influential Black people in the British game. 

Marcus Rashford makes the list for his outstanding campaigning work to raise awareness of child food poverty in the UK, as well as successfully lobbying the government to provide children with school meals when they need them the most. 

Marcus Rashford
Marcus Rashford

Footballers joining Rashford in the Cyrille Regis Players section of the list, include Crystal Palace women’s Goalkeeper, Chloe Morgan, for raising awareness of both Black representation and LGBT+ inclusion in the women’s game.

Aston Villa and England defender, Tyrone Mings, and Watford striker, Troy Deeney, for using their platforms to challenge racial injustice.

Palace and Ivory Coast forward, Wilfried Zaha, for his efforts to support nurses during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Elsewhere on the list, Edleen John, who sits on The FA’s leadership team, Aston Villa women sporting director, Eniola Aluko, and QPR director of football, Les Ferdinand, feature in the senior administration section. 


LGBT+ Award

This year The Football Black List launched their inaugural LGBT+ award. The first-ever recipient of the award which was won by the Football v Homophobia Education Lead, Annette Nelson.

Annette Nelson is the first ever recipient of the Football Black List LGBT+ Award.

Annette spoke with Diva Magazine about how important of an award this is and what it feels like to be the first-ever recipient.

”I’m delighted to receive this Football Black List award as part of the Football v Homophobia team. This award sends out a powerful message about the contribution of Black LGBTQI people in the game.

The work of educators can be overlooked, so I’m especially delighted to receive this award as someone whose life has been committed to education for equality and inclusion.”

Annette Nelson to Diva Magazine

The reaction to this award and Annette being the inaugural winner was met with overwhelming support on social media. Sky Sports editor Jon Holmes tweeted his delight for Annette who became the Football Black List’s first-ever LGBT+ Award winner.


The Voice Newspaper

The Voice Newspaper is the exclusive home of the Football Black List which creates an opportunity to celebrate the Black communities contribute to the industry, while also encouraging debate and discussion on how best to address the ongoing under-representation of people from African-Caribbean backgrounds away from playing. 

Importantly, the list also helps to shine a light on deserving people working in the community and at the grassroots level of the game who often go uncelebrated.


The list recognises people across eight categories:

  • Administration
  • Coaching & Management
  • Commercial
  • Community
  • Cyrille Regis Players
  • LGBT+
  • Media
  • Practitioner

Rodney Hinds, the co-founder of the Football Black List, said: “Yet again the Football Black List has unearthed many in the community that are doing great work.

“The efforts of Marcus Rashford deserve acclaim alongside the others on the list who go about their business for the good of others.

Rodney Hinds, the co-founder of the Football Black List

“The Voice is happy to be home of the Football Black List and after a year of challenges it is great to be provided with inspiration.”

Rodney Hinds, the co-founder of the Football Black List

Fellow co-founder of the initiative, Leon Mann, added: 

“The global Black Lives Matter protests have made the game reflect on its own diversity and relationship with Black communities. 

– Co-founder of the initiative, Leon Mann

“The Football Black List provides a snapshot of the wonderful contribution the Black community makes to the national sport. We hope it inspires the next generation of Black leaders to follow those listed and the initiative helps encourage the football industry to put diversity at the top of the agenda – where it needs to be to make much-needed progress in this area.”

– Co-founder of the initiative, Leon Mann

Below will be the full list of categories and candidates for this years Football Black List.

Candidates for the 2020 Football Black List below:

Annette Nelson, Education Lead – Football v Homophobia


Cyrille Regis Players:
Chloe Morgan, Crystal Palace Women
Marcus Rashford MBE, Manchester United and England 
Troy Deeney, Watford FC
Tyrone Mings, Aston Villa and England 
Wilfried Zaha, Crystal Palace and Ivory Coast 

Edleen John, Director of International Relations, Corporate Affairs and Diversity – The FA
Eniola Aluko, Sporting Director – Aston Villa FC Women
Jade Morgan, General Manager – Leicester City Women
Les Ferdinand MBE, Director of Football – Queens Park Rangers
Marie Gabriel CBE, Chairperson – West Ham United Foundation

Coaching and Management:
Alex Dyer, Manager – Kilmarnock FC
Ashley Bosah & Cornelius Nwadialor, Joint Managers – Tooting & Mitcham FC
Jason Euell, Under 23 Head Coach – Charlton Athletic FC
Karleigh Osborne, Women’s Head Coach – Brentford FC
Tony Whelan, Assistant Academy Director – Manchester United


Ashanti George-Faure, Senior Talent Manager – Refresh Sports
Faina Msellam, Sports Industry Advisory Board Member – Birkbeck Sport Business Centre
Marvin Morgan, CEO – Fresh Ego Kid
Nathan Thompson, Commercial Director – West Ham United
Warren Haughton, Director, Haughton Consultancy

Community and Grassroots:
Diane Sawyers, Operations Manager – Holford Drive Community Sports Hub
Duke Harrison-Hunter, Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Officer – Pompey in the Community
Emma Trent, Head of Programmes – Notts County Football in the Community
Harold Bennett, Founder – North London United
Dr. Michael Seeraj, Head of Equality Diversity & Inclusion – Charlton Athletic FC

Carl Anka, Football Reporter – The Athletic
Charlene Gravesande, Special Projects Journalist – Sky Sports
Hugh Woozencroft, Sports Broadcaster – talkSPORT
Jessica Creighton, Sports Reporter – Sky Sports
Micah Richards, Freelance Broadcaster

Hayley Bennett, Founder – WeAreNutmegs
Jason Lee, Equalities Education Executive – PFA
Marvin Robinson, CEO – Peterborough United Foundation
Dr Matt Ogunsanya, Club Doctor – Watford FC
Sam Allison, National Group Referee – PGMOL


For further information on the Football Black List celebration please contact Andrew Bontiff via

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