England international footballer, Marcus Rashford has explained why he won’t stop making political moves to end child poverty in the UK.
The Manchester United striker was awarded an MBE award last year by the Queen of England on the back of his efforts to end child poverty by creating a level playing field for all ages and races. He says he won’t heed the advice of some people to “stick to football” and avoid politics.
The 23-year-old speaking to The Spectator, Rashford said:
“In football, you are always stronger in numbers. With a shared focus, people from different cultures, nationalities, races, sexual orientations, political affiliations and religions can unite to achieve incredible things.
“When you pull on that national team shirt, rivalry subsides and is replaced with a shared desire to win. When fans step into that stadium, for 90 minutes they feel a part of something, a collective, able to leave any worries outside those turnstiles. To many it is a religion.
To me, it’s still a dream.”You grow up idolising figures in this game who turn out to be just like you and me. Human beings with human emotions and who, more than likely, have overcome some level of adversity in their career. “Disappointingly for some, the ‘stick to football’ advice doesn’t cut it where I’m from. See, when my community had nothing to call their own, they always found something in the way of kindness to give me.
“I am a product of their compassion, of their drive and of their willingness to offer me more than what was on my doorstep. I’d be doing that community and my family a disservice if I did not use my platform to speak on behalf of the millions whose voices are not being heard.” “Party politics has never interested me. What interests me is working together to find sustainable solutions.
“The long-term effects of a global pandemic will not be resolved with short-term relief packages. So it’s time for us all to unite with the passion we saw during the Euros and make sure every child in this country is given a fair chance, and that child hunger is eradicated. No child should be starting 20 yards behind any other just because of the community they live in. It’s time to level up.”