Sol Bamba says the lack of black, Asian and minority ethnic coaches in English football will not stop him trying to break into management.
Cardiff City defender Bamba, 35, wants to move into the dugout when his playing career ends.
He says he is “not at all” put off by the lack of black coaches in the game at present.
“I actually think if you want to break that (barrier) then we need to do it,” Bamba said.
Former Ivory Coast international Bamba has another year to run on his playing contract, but is in the process of gaining his coaching badges.
At present, there are just four BAME managers in English’s football’s top four divisions in Wolves’ Nuno Espirito, Sabri Lamouchi of Nottingham Forest, Doncaster’s Darren Moore and Keith Curle of Northampton, while Hayden Mullins finished 2019-20 in caretaker charge of Watford.
Sol Campbell and Dino Maamria have recently left jobs at Southend and Oldham respectively.
The Premier League, EFL and Professional Footballers’ Association announced a new scheme in June designed to boost the number of BAME coaches.
The scheme, which starts next season, will give six coaches a 23-month work placement at EFL clubs per campaign.
Ex-Leicester, Leeds and Hibernian player Bamba says he is determined to carve out a career as a coach.
“I’ve been talking to a few other ex-pros who have been saying ‘Oh, I won’t do it, I won’t get an interview’, but if that’s the mindset you’ve got then we have got no chance and there will never be any black or BAME community managers,” he said.
“And I think that’s a problem. I know the pathway has to be better, don’t get me wrong, but I do think we need to do more and forget about the mindset of ‘Oh I’m not going to get an interview’, because it takes time. Everything takes time.
“We have seen a change with the Black Lives Matter movement, but it is going to take time.
“So I am definitely not put off by it. I’m just going to do my thing and hopefully I am going to have a chance one day to do it.”