Posted on: Thu 31 Oct 2013

Romelu Lukaku and Nathaniel Chalobah have both been named as part of the Next 20 initiative launched by Kick It Out to champion 20 young stars across the Premier League, Football League and Women's Super League (WSL).

The Next 20, which was introduced as part of the organisation's 'Season of Action' to mark its 20-year anniversary, will see players including Lukaku and Chalobah, who are on loan at Everton and Nottingham Forest respectively, raise awareness of Kick It Out through a varied set of activities within the community.

Chalobah (pictured) was inspired to get involved with the Next 20 after hearing Kick It Out trustee Garth Crooks recount the racism he suffered during his playing days. Crooks was making a presentation to the England Under-21s team prior to their 6-0 victory over Scotland in August.

Chalobah said: 'The horrific abuse that Garth and other black players suffered during that time was a real eye opener and inspired me to want to support this fantastic new campaign. We have to take the message forward that discrimination has no place in our game or our communities, and I'm proud to be part of the Next 20 initiative.'

Kick It Out

Lord Herman Ouseley, chair of Kick It Out, feels this set of exciting young players are symbolic of the diverse nature of Great Britain and what the professional game should strive to be in the future.

'This is an important step in the progression of our work, in that we engage with players who can help shape our objectives with their experiences,' he commented.

'These players were specifically chosen as they reflect the diverse nature of the country and we hope that in the future they will reflect the diverse nature of football on a mass scale.'

Lord Ouseley concluded: 'They are an important part of our aim to eradicate discrimination and under-representation in football now and in the future.'

Next 20 players in full:

Carl Jenkinson (Arsenal FC)
Jordan Nobbs (Arsenal Ladies FC)
Danny Rose (Barnsley FC)
Jason Lowe (Blackburn Rovers FC)
Dylan Lall (Brighton & Hove Albion FC)
Nathaniel Chalobah (Chelsea FC on loan at Nottingham Forest FC)
Romelu Lukaku (Chelsea FC on loan at Everton FC)
Callum Wilson (Coventry City FC)
Toni Duggan (Everton Ladies FC)
Andre Wisdom (Liverpool FC on loan at Derby County FC)
Daniel Powell (MK Dons FC)
Gael Bigirimana (Newcastle United FC)
Nathan Redmond (Norwich City FC)
Jamaal Lascelles (Nottingham Forest FC)
Michael Harriman (Queens Park Rangers FC on loan at Gillingham FC)
Harry Maguire (Sheffield United FC)
Jack Butland (Stoke City FC on loan at Barnsley FC)
Ben Davies (Swansea City FC)
Wesley Foderingham (Swindon Town FC)
Romaine Sawyers (Walsall FC)