Former Hibs’ striker Kevin Harper has backed calls from Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling for more black managers in the game to help tackle racism. 

Harper became the first black manager in Scottish football for 15 years when he was appointed manager of Albion Rovers last year. 

He led the club to a miraculous escape from relegation but was unable to reach an agreement with the board following the expiry of his contract. 

Harper told Sky Sports: “I applied for over 40 jobs and that’s ranging from first team manager, assistant manager, U18s, U23s, both in Scotland and down south. 

“I probably applied to pretty much every club under the Premier League for jobs that were available and probably got two or three replies and one interview. 

 “My first and only interview was Albion Rovers and I got the job. 

“For me being an ex-pro playing at Premier Leagues in Scotand and England, working under managers like Harry Redknapp, Tony Pulis, Alex Miller and all the wealth of experience that comes with that. 

“There had been no black manager in Scotland for 15 years until I got that job. 

“When I got the job I said it was disgraceful. In any other walk of life there would be outrage. 

“But I have never ever said I deserve a job just because of the colour of my skin. I want to be offered a job because I’m the best candidate.” 

Look at Scotland as a whole – there’s 40 clubs and if you break that down to a manager, assistant manager and coach that’s 120 people. 

“When I went in there were no other black or ethnic coaches. 

“Out of 120 jobs there was only me. That, for me, was wrong. 

“I know for a fact my CV was better than people who were getting interviews. That left me disappointed because I love football, it’s been my life for 40 years.”