These hateful words have no place anywhere in our society whether online or otherwise.
Greater Manchester Police have confirmed they have launched an investigation after several Manchester United players were targeted by racist abuse on social media in recent days.
Defender Axel Tuanzebe and striker Anthony Martial both found themselves facing a flurry of horrific abuse in the aftermath of the 2-1 defeat at the hands of Sheffield United, and Marcus Rashford became the latest to be targeted after the 0-0 draw with Arsenal.
“We are aware of a number of Manchester United football players suffering abuse on social media accounts between Wednesday 27 January and Saturday 30 January 2021,” a statement from GMP read on Twitter.
“Nobody should be subject to such abuse and it is deeply upsetting not only to those who suffer it, but to all those who come across this awful language too.
“A number of these comments have been reported to us and we are liaising with those involved to procide support and we will be investigating these crimes thoroughly.”
Rashford described the abuse directed towards him as ‘humanity and social media at its worst’, warning those responsible that his pride towards the colour of his skin would never be broken by some so-called fans online.
On the abuse directed towards Rashford, a spokesperson for Facebook told the BBC: “There is no place for racism on Instagram and we are committed to removing it when we find it.
Manchester United star Marcus Rashford has become the latest high-profile footballer to be subjected to racist abuse on social media.
It comes after United condemned similar abuse directed towards Anthony Martial and Axel Tuanzebe, while Rashford’s England teammate Reece James was sent vile racist messages on Instagram – all of which came over the course of the past week.
Rashford wrote on Twitter:
“Humanity and social media at its worst. Yes I’m a black man and I live every day proud that I am.
“No-one, or no one comment, is going to make me feel any different. So sorry if you were looking for a strong reaction, you’re just simply not going to get it here.
“I’m not sharing screenshots. It would be irresponsible to do so and as you can imagine there’s nothing original in them.
“I have beautiful children of all colours following me and they don’t need to read it. Beautiful colours that should only be celebrated.”
Rashford’s story strengthens calls for tighter moderation on social media platforms in order to prevent the sort of anonymity that enables individuals to freely spout hatred without fear of consequence beyond a suspension or ban.
The Premier League continues to stand against racism, with clubs taking a knee ahead of every match in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. But more than six months since those shows of support began, we are still seeing players subjected to racist abuse on a far too regular basis.
James called for change after revealing the extent of the abuse he received, while Premier League chief Richard Masters has asked social media companies to take more responsibility for the hatred shared on their platforms.
He said: “We are in regular dialogue with social media companies, challenging them to do more against discriminatory abuse on their platforms. We want to see swifter removal of offensive messages and improved identification and banning of offenders.”
But Rashford is also adamant that United do not go out looking for penalties or are awarded more than they deserve.
Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has revealed that former manager Jose Mourinho taught him to be ‘more savvy’ in the penalty area so that he is more likely to win a penalty if he is fouled by giving the referee no doubt
A player who tries to stay on their feet when fouled in the box can end up disadvantaged and not getting the decision because a foul is not always as clear.
“When you are making runs in behind or dribbling with the ball and if you see a challenge coming, you don’t want to get tackled because you are looking at an opportunity to score a goal,” he said on Thursday night as he accepted the Football Writers’ Association 2021 Tribute Award.
“There is no way you are going to let somebody take the ball off you, so for me it is a case of us wanting to score goals and the teams wanting to defend goals and penalties can happen. There have been times when we have probably not got penalties.
“When Jose [Mourinho] was manager, there were five or six times where I should have had a penalty and Jose ended up saying to me, ‘If you are not savvy about the way you do it, then you are not going to [get] it.’ After that, we started to get a few penalties.
“It was something, in terms of development, you have to learn and understand.”
Jurgen Klopp recently made a pointed jibe that United have had more penalties since 2018 than Liverpool have had in his entire time at the club.
That is true, but this season alone United have had only one more in the Premier League and both have scored five.
It is actually Leicester that have been awarded far more than anyone else – 10 so far, scoring eight.
Liverpool have also benefitted more from penalties, taken seven additional points as a direct result of scoring from the spot. United over the same period have taken six additional points.
Manchester United teammates Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba have both posted powerful anti-racism messages on social media, as outcry continues to build over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
“I know you guys haven’t heard from me in a few days,” said England forward Rashford in a message posted on Twitter and Instagram. “I’ve been trying to process what is going on in the world.”
“At a time [when] I’ve been asking people to come together, work together and be united, we appear more divided than ever,” the 22-year-old added. “People are hurting and people need answers.
“Black lives matter. Black culture matters. Black communities matter. We matter.” Rashford also called for justice for Floyd, who died last Monday after a white police officer kneeled on his neck.
Pogba also joined the calls for change on his Instagram account. “During the past few days I have thought a lot about how to express my feelings about what happened in Minneapolis,” Pogba wrote. “I felt anger, pity, hatred, indignation, pain, sadness.
“Sadness for George and for all black people who suffer from racism EVERY DAY!” added the France midfielder. “Whether in football, at work, at school, ANYWHERE! This has to stop, once and for all! Not tomorrow or the next day, it has to end TODAY! Violent acts of racism can no longer be tolerated. I can’t tolerate. I won’t tolerate. WE WON’T TOLERATE. Racism is ignorance. LOVE is intelligence.”
Earlier on Monday Liverpool players, including captain Jordan Henderson and defender Virgil Van Dijk, tweeted messages with an image of the players taking a knee during training at Anfield.
Rashford has followed his England colleague Jadon Sancho in addressing the issue after the Borussia Dortmund winger said “we shouldn’t fear speaking out for what’s right”. Sancho displayed a message reading “Justice for George Floyd” on his undershirt after scoring the first of his three goals against Paderborn on Sunday.
Premier League side Chelsea have declared that they stand with Floyd and “all victims in the fight against discrimination, brutality and injustice” in a statement.
“As a club we are committed to being a part of the solution, and we are joining our voice to all those calling for fairness, equality and meaningful change. Enough is enough. Together we are stronger.”
The former England captain, David Beckham, posted on Instagram: “My heart goes out to George’s family and I stand in solidarity with the black community and millions of others across the world who are outraged by these events. Its heartbreaking to see that in 2020 this is still happening.”
Manchester United’s pursuit of Jadon Sancho looks to have taken a major step after reports claim that the Borussia Dortmund winger is open to a move to Old Trafford.
Sancho is one of the hottest young talents in world football right now, having scored 14 goals and registered 16 assists for Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga this season.
This has alerted the attention of Europe’s top clubs, with significant Premier League interest coming from the likes of Liverpool, Chelsea and of course United.
And The Athletic claim that Sancho’s is keen on joining Manchester United next season due to his history of living and playing in Manchester.
Sancho played for the academy teams of the Red Devils’ rivals Manchester City before joining German club Dortmund for £8million in 2017.
The move would see Sancho link up with fellow forward and England team-mate Marcus Rashford, with the pair having combined for Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions team during the international break.
And Rashford is excited about the prospect of playing alongside Sancho at club level as well as on the international stage.
He told Reliable Sources Live: ‘Hopefully we can all play together, that would be good.
‘He plays off the cuff, he’s creative and imaginative, these are the things you need to be world class.’
Sancho is also a target for Liverpool and Chelsea but the Premier League duo are not prepared to pay Dortmund’s asking price for their star winger, say The Athletic.
Any deal for the 20-year-old is likely to exceed the £100million mark given the player’s exciting potential.Borussia Dortmund chiefs are mulling over whether to cash in on the Englishman or try their best to keep him at the club – but they insist he will not be sold on the cheap.
Dortmund’s chief executive Hans-Joachim Watzke said last week: ‘You always have to respect what the player wants. We already said before corona that our preference is for Jadon to remain with us.
‘I can say clearly that even the very rich clubs, despite the current crisis, shouldn’t think they can get a bargain from us. We don’t have to sell anyone below their value.’
Both Dortmund and Manchester United are waiting to see how the transfer window will play out this year given the global suspension of the 2019/20 football season across the world.
England medics are growing increasingly concerned over the fitness of Marcus Rashford and have contacted Manchester United to examine their medical reports over fears for his Euro 2020 involvement.
This season has been the striker’s most prolific to date, netting 19 goals in all competitions – including 14 in the top flight – yet injury has blighted his season and his participation before the end of the campaign looks at risk.
Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford insists he will play before the end of the season as he recuperates from a stress fracture.
The England international, 22, was injured after coming on as a substitute during the FA Cup third-round replay win against Wolves on 15 January.
Some reports suggested the forward, who has scored 19 goals for United this season, could miss two months.
But Rashford said on Twitter: “Blink and I’ll be back, fitter than ever.”
United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer says he will give Rashford “as long as he needs” to get fit.
The precise length of his absence with a back injury is unknown.
Solskjaer has refused to offer any assurances about Rashford being back for the end of the season, or even Euro 2020, saying it would be at least six weeks before the striker is fit to start training.
Others who have suffered similar injuries say it will be much longer.
But Rashford wrote on Wednesday: “I’ll be back before the season ends to hopefully help my team claim top four.”
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Earlier, Solskjaer said: “Marcus is going to get as long as he needs. We are not going to risk him when he has had an injury. When he comes back he will be 100% fit.”
‘I never put myself before the team’
Former Arsenal and England forward Ian Wright has accused the United boss of putting his own needs ahead of those of Rashford by playing the forward against Wolves.
The Norwegian denies the allegation strongly.
“I never put myself before the team,” Solskjaer said. “I put the team and the club before anything else.
“Yes, he had minor discomfort but he had scans. We monitored him. We have to manage players every single day. There are loads of things Ian Wright, or anyone else, doesn’t know about.”
Solskjaer said Rashford was not suffering from a stress fracture prior to the Wolves game.
“He trained the day before and did really well,” he said. “He looked free. I asked him if he was OK to be on the bench and he said it was no problem.”
Rashford had been suffering from ‘minor discomfort’ before playing against Wolves and injuring his back, Solskjaer said
‘Someone has to step up’
Rashford’s absence has thrown into focus the decision to let Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez join Inter Milan last summer. There is no break clause in Sanchez’s loan deal, meaning United will continue paying the Chilean’s wages as they look for a short-term solution to what Solskjaer accepts is a stretched squad.
AC Milan’s Polish forward Krzysztof Piatek is the latest name to be linked with a move to Old Trafford, although that would almost certainly need to be a permanent deal rather than the loan United are initially looking for.
Neither Piatek, nor any alternative, will be available for Wednesday’s Premier League encounter with Burnley.
Solskjaer has ruled out picking 19-year-old D’Mani Mellor, a substitute in November’s Europa League game against Astana, so the responsibility of filling the void left by United’s 19-goal top scorer against Burnley will fall on Anthony Martial and 18-year-old Mason Greenwood.
“Someone has to step up,” said Solskjaer.
“Marcus has been fantastic and while we may find something in the transfer market, the best solution is the players making sure they are ready and taking their chance -because what has happened will create chances.”
Marcus Rashford will help seal a special moment in Manchester United’s history on Sunday.
When Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team take the field for their Premier League game against Everton, it will be the 4,000th consecutive time United’s matchday squad has contained a player they have developed in their youth set-up.
The run started with a Second Division encounter against Fulham at Craven Cottage on 30 October 1937.
Rashford is the current shining star, following in the footsteps of – among others – Johnny Carey, the Busby Babes, Bobby Charlton, Nobby Stiles, George Best and the Class of 92.
The England striker spoke to BBC Sport about his own development from a young child growing up in Wythenshawe.
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Do you remember the first time a scout spoke to you or your mum and said, ‘we want Marcus to come down’?
Yeah. Before I came to United, there was a lot of clubs [including Manchester City and Liverpool, as well Everton, Newcastle, Crewe and Accrington Stanley]. We supported Manchester United but my mum didn’t know much about football.
It was my brothers, really, who managed to categorise good academies from bad academies, The final decision came down to which club I loved and wanted to play for? United was perfect. It was everything that you wish for as a kid. Whether you leave the club or you stay here forever, people say once you play for United you’re always a red and for me that’s true.
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The academy holds a huge place in United’s history. They mould you into a Manchester United person or a Manchester United player. But the process begins before you can even remember. There are people who have been there since they were five or six. I was having fun until I was about 11 or 12.
You don’t realise how good you can be or the potential you have. You are just having a kickabout with some kids you have grown to like and have become friends with through football. Looking back on it, the stuff we used to do in training, that is how the process started in becoming a Manchester United player.
Marcus Rashford and the U18 Manchester United team
Rashford (top left) lining up for Manchester United Under-18s in 2015
How difficult is it to break through at a club like this?
It can be very tough. We are privileged to go to lots of tournaments in places like Spain or Italy. I tried to take little bits from everywhere I went. I used to think ‘even if you are not as good as some of the players you are playing against, it is a completely different culture’.
You see with some of the Spanish and Brazilian players here, they bring something different to the team.
There was a tournament where we finished 14th out of 20. We all learned so much from that tournament. There was another where we finished second but we probably didn’t learn half as much as we did in the previous one. It is around the ages of 13, 14, 15 that you learn a lot.
From 15 to 18, that is your moment to start trying to mature because the men’s game is a lot different to academy football. The initial transition can be tough but if you just stick at it, naturally you get used to it. You start to perform at that level and it will become standard.
What was it like when you first trained with the first team?
The first time was under David Moyes and a group of us went over. It was an amazing feeling. I remember the training session, we didn’t actually touch the ball, we were just doing shape and stuff like that. But then we go back to our own age group. What you learned from that little 15-20 minutes is priceless as a young academy player.
Those moments start to add up and when you start training with them more regularly, you pick up more things, more things to learn from and that’s how you become a first-team player.
Who were the biggest influences on your career?
I always try to narrow it down to the biggest impact, which was moving into a forward position. When I was an academy player, I was more about creating opportunities and showing people what I could do.
It wasn’t until about six months before I made my debut – when I was 18 – that my perception changed.
That was down to [coaches] Paul McGuinness, Colin Little and spells with Warren Joyce, especially in training. What they did started to mature me a little bit and make me understand it was not all about showing people what I could do.
I might have to be in a position where I would not get the ball but it would be affecting play more than if I was getting the ball all the time. That six-month period before I made my debut was a huge learning curve.
Rashford’s debut, in a Europa League match against Danish side Midtjylland in the Europa League on 25 February 2016, was something of a fluke.
Will Keane had been injured after coming on in an FA Cup tie at Shrewsbury three days earlier, so Rashford replaced him as a substitute in the squad for the European game. He was thrust into the starting line-up by then-manager Louis van Gaal after Anthony Martial was injured in the warm-up. Rashford scored twice in a 5-1 win.
I had been on the bench at Watford and Leicester the previous November and not got on, so I think I would have made my debut at some point in the season.
That night it was obviously unfortunate for Anthony that he got injured but it was an opportunity for me to speed up the process of playing for the first team. Because of the way it happened, I wasn’t thinking much about anything. I just wanted to enjoy the moment. It was something special for the rest of my career. I just wanted to enjoy it.
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Rashford has now made 191 first-team appearances, scoring 58 goals. In February 2018, his portrait was added to those of David Beckham, Paul Scholes and Nicky Butt, among others, that adorn the walls of the academy building at United’s Carrington training ground.
Last weekend, Solskjaer said he could reach the same heights as five-time Ballon D’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo.
It is a bit overwhelming but it is the process of development. The players I looked up to are obviously older now. The younger players look up to us. The transition happens so fast. When I understood that, my perception of that picture changed a little bit.
When I was younger and saw people such as Beckham and Scholes on the walls, it gave me that determination every time you went to training. I wanted to reach those heights. I knew they were on the other side of the building, training every day and working hard. I was so far away from them but so close at the same time.
It’s happening now where people like me and Scotty [McTominay] are an example to some of the academy lads who are coming in. It will be the same in a few years’ time, when it’s the next lot of kids. While that happens, I don’t see United’s breeding of players slowing down.
The Ronaldo thing was nice, definitely a compliment. But I understand how far I’ve got left to go to reach the heights he reached so I am very clear-minded and focused on myself