(Reuters) – Expressing opinions on social issues and campaigning for change is becoming more normal for the current generation of players, Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford has said.
Rashford earned widespread praise after the England forward successfully campaigned for school food vouchers to be provided over the summer holidays in Britain, revealing that he relied on such support as a boy.
Manchester City forward Raheem Sterling, Real Madrid full back Marcelo and Bayern Munich defender Jerome Boateng have all spoken out about racism recently, earning praise from UEFA chief Aleksander Ceferin.
“It’s becoming more normal that people speak out on topics that they believe in and I think it’s just positive for the future,” Rashford told the BBC.
“Just look at the generations after us — hopefully it becomes a normal thing and people actually want to do that and put themselves forward to do that.”
The BBC reported that Rashford had recently spoken to British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who thanked the 22-year-old forward “for using what he had built in a positive manner.”
“It’s obviously a proud moment,” Rashford added.
“It’s a nice feeling but I’m happy that people’s lives are going to be changed for the better, so that was the important thing that I tried to change.”
(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; editing by Richard Pullin)