Marcus Rashford has defended his off-field partnerships following claims that he has profited from his campaigns for social change. The Manchester United and England forward also questioned why footballers “can’t just do the right thing” for charity.
The 23-year-old’s comments came on Twitter after he learned that British weekly magazine ‘The Spectator’ was about to publish a story on him receiving income from one of the partnerships.
At the onset of the pandemic last year, Rashford had campaigned against child food poverty, eventually raising up to £20 million for various groups as he became the youngest player to top the Sunday Times Giving List.
His actions have also forced the British government to reconsider their measures for free school meals during the pandemic.
“Just heard @spectator are planning to run a story on me tomorrow about how I have benefited commercially in the last 18 months,” he tweeted Tuesday.
"To clarify, I don't need to partner with brands. I partner because I want to progress the work I do off the pitch and most of any fee I would receive contributes to that.”
"Last summer, 1.3m children had access to food support, through my relationship with Burberry children have a safe place to be after school where they will be fed, following the November investment vulnerable children have safe places to go this summer holiday, and due to my relationship with Macmillan 80,000 children now have a book to call their own.”
"Do I have a larger commercial appeal following the U-turns? I'm sure. But I'm also a Manchester United and England international footballer. Why has there always got to be a motive? Why can't we just do the right thing?"
Rashford’s actions got him awarded an MBE title in the delayed 2020 queen’s birthday honours list, and a mural in his honour was made in Withington, Manchester.
However, he, along with Bukayo Saka and Jadon Sancho, was the subject of online racist abuse earlier this month after missing a penalty in the Euro 2020 final defeat to Italy. The mural in honour was also vandalised, with a number of swear words smeared across it.