Darren Moore hopes his appointment as West Brom head coach will be an inspiration to all young British managers and not just those from ethnic minority backgrounds.
The 44-year-old is only the second manager in the Premier League, alongside Chris Hughton at Brighton, to represent a Black, Asian and minority ethnic (BAME) group. There are currently just three in the top four divisions with Keith Curle making up the number – although he is set to leave Carlisle.
Moore has been given the Baggies job following an impressive spell as caretaker manager after Alan Pardew was sacked at the start of April.
He steered West Brom to three wins – including victories against Manchester United and Tottenham – and two draws in six Premier League matches, staving off relegation until the last week of the season and restoring some pride back in the club after a miserable campaign both on and off the pitch.
“Am I a role model? I’ll probably leave it out there for you to look at,” said Moore.
“By me sitting here in the position and the role I’ve got, it’s an inspiration to all young British coaches. I’m in this role representing BAME coaches and young British coaches.
“Hopefully, my role inspires them right the way through to grass roots football right through to the professional game. If it does that for individuals then I’m extremely proud.”
Sadly for Moore his appointment comes too late to be witnessed by his good friend and pioneer for equal opportunities Cyrille Regis, who died in January.
Moore regularly spoke with Regis, both former West Brom players, and feels his progression from Under-18 boss, to the Under-23s and now on to the first team at The Hawthorns would have met with Regis’ approval.
“Yes, Cyrille was a personal friend of mine. Somebody I held in extremely high regard. Somebody, who if he was with us here today, would certainly be part of this,” said Moore, who played for the club between 2001 and 2006.
“He was a very experienced man and somebody I spoke to regularly about football. He was a knowledgeable man about the game inside and out. He had great thoughts on the game.
“I’m really proud and I’m sure he’s looking down on us now and saying he’s very happy.”
Moore said his first task is to finalise his back room team. He revealed that James Shan (development coach) and Neil Cutler (goalkeeping coach) are set to remain in their roles but he will appoint an assistant head coach.