Kilmarnock manager Alex Dyer hopes his appointment to the Rugby Park hot seat can serve as an example and “open doors” for other black and ethic minority (BAME) coaches.
Dyer has recently been named as the permanent successor to Angelo Alessio after the Italian was sacked in December. His appointment comes at a time when there are continued questions about the lack of BAME coaches in managerial positions in the UK.
The 54-year-old, who worked as assistant to Chris Powell at Charlton and Huddersfield and was Steve Clarke’s right-hand man at Rugby Park, said: “I am hoping that me up here sends a good message, a message that I am working for a wonderful club and wonderful people who have given me a great opportunity.
“If I am a role model, I am a role model. I am here to do the job to the best of my ability and if that opens doors for other people of my colour/culture then all good.
“It is about getting the right opportunities, doing all your badges.
“It is a subject that is always going to be there. I am a black man who is working in an industry where there is not many black coaches and I hope that me being a coach and now a black manager, that will open doors for others.
“But at the same time you have to do the right thing. People have to go through the system, that’s the way it is.
“I am not naive, I know that in the past people have been turned down for jobs for the reason of their colour.
“We know that has happened in the past but we still have to keep knocking down the door.
“But I am here as a manager first of all. I am a black man but I am a manager and I want to do the best I can.
“It is a difficult subject but at the end of the day I just want to do the best I can and if it opens the doors for others, so be it.”
Dyer had been working as caretaker boss at Killie following Alessio’s departure and said he felt the timing was right to take on the top job.
He said: “I think I have done my apprenticeship over the years and earned the right and I will give it my best shot.”