Anwar Uddin: British South Asian in football royalty earns MBE in Queen’s Birthday Honours List

27 Jun 2022 | 08:00 | Football

Anwar Uddin has been awarded an MBE for his service to Association football in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List, becoming the first ever British South Asian current or former player to receive the honour.

This year’s honours coincide with a four-day national celebration to mark the 70th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth’s accession to the throne, with FA Council member Uddin one of only four football personalities to receive an MBE – along with Wales captain Gareth Bale, Liverpool midfielder James Milner and ex-Scotland international goalkeeper Alan Lowe. Udin’s former West Ham academy team-mate Rio Ferdinand has been awarded an OBE.

Eve Muirhead, Moeen Ali and Gareth Bale
Winter Olympian Eve Moorhead, cricketer Moen Ali and footballer Gareth Bale were all recognised this year

fans of diversity Campaign chief Uddin was the first English-born Bangladeshi player in English football history and joined an outstanding list of winners that included every member of the 1966 World Cup winning team, as well as current England men’s and women’s internationals such as Jordan Henderson, Stephen Houghton, Harry Kane, Marcus Rashford and Raheem Sterling.

uddin, who sky sports news Exclusively revealed to be appointed as England C assistant manager, One of the few players in the modern era to emerge from Tower Hamlets in London, he captained West Ham to the FA Youth Cup before signing Premier League terms with the club in 1999.

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Sky Sports News broke the story of Anwar Uddin becoming the first British South Asian ex-player in FA Council history

After a brief stint at Sheffield Wednesday, the former centre-back went on to play for Bristol Rovers before returning to near London to join Dagenham and Redbridge in 2004, where he spent six seasons Over 200 appearances.

Uddin became the first English South Asian to captain a league team during his spells at Dagenham and Redbridge, and he also became the first to captain a league team when the Daggers advanced 3-3 to the top of the league. The English South Asians, lifting the trophy under the arches at Wembley Stadium, won 2 against Rotherham in the 2010 League Two play-off final.

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Anwar Uddin scores Vincent Kompany-style smash hit for Rainbow Rovers in a charity match at White Eagles FC to raise money for Brighton Rainbow Fund

That summer, the former defender was reunited with former manager John Steele at Barnett before being promoted to interim assistant to Giuliano Grazioli when Steele left, making him the No. 1 leader of the British South Asian community. An English Football League coach.

Uddin, whose father is from Sylhet, Bangladesh, played for Sutton United and Eastbourne, and managed non-league teams Bengal United and Vail after hanging up his boots.

He worked as Danny Searle’s assistant for two and a half years at Aldershot before being reunited with Paul Fairclough, another of his former managers at Barnett, for England C’s recent friendly against Wales .

Uddin brought in three traditional South Asian coaches to support the team’s away games, creating one of the most diverse coaching benches in England’s international football history.

Singh (left) Uddin (second from left), Fairclough, Kauri, Saidat (second from right)
England manager Paul Fairclough flanks Uddin and Irfan Curry, Pav Singh (far left) and Ibrahim Seidat (far right)

Uddin combines football commitment with managing the Fan Diversity Campaign, an initiative co-funded by the Football Supporters Association and Kick It Out to promote diversity and inclusion in football. He has helped create approximately 200 different supporter groups across the country, including more than 70 LGBT+ fans and allies.

Anwar Uddin and Manisha Taylor at the 2022 Premier League Youth Development Conference
Anwar Uddin and Manisha Tailor spoke at the recent Premier League meeting

East Londoner Udin has also partnered with red card charities Show Racism and the Professional Footballers Association (PFA) and has publicly supported Sky Sports’ transformative work to raise awareness and change the narrative about football in South Asia in the UK has been built through a partnership with Sporting Equals, the country’s largest racial equality charity in sport.

He is currently helping the Premier League with their strategy Following the historic launch of the Alliance’s first South Asia Action Plan with Kick It Out, Help address the underrepresentation of South Asian footballers in the academy system in the UK.

Anwar Uddin England C Assistant Manager
Anwar Uddin has big plans for England C team

British South Asians are the largest single ethnic minority group in the country, but the community has been grossly underrepresented in professional competition for decades, Kick It Out chairman Sanjay Bhandari describes it as sky sports news As football’s biggest statistical anomaly.

The latest available PFA data shows that despite high participation rates across the country, less than 0.5% of all professional footballers in English professional football are from a South Asian background.

British South Asians in football

For more stories, features and videos, visit our groundbreaking South Asians in the football page on and South Asians in Games Blog and stay tuned to Sky Sports News and Our Sky Sports digital platform.

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