Marcus Rashford has challenged a magazine over a story that has yet to be published, suggesting he has “benefited commercially” from his campaign.
The Manchester United and England forward spoke out after learning about the article The Spectator apparently planned to publish.
Just heard @spectator are planning to post a story about me tomorrow on how I have benefited commercially over the past 18 months… To clarify, I don’t need to associate with brands. I am a partner because I want to advance the work I do off the pitch and… (1)
– Marcus Rashford MBE (@MarcusRashford) July 20, 2021
Rashford, 23, has backed a number of child food poverty incentives and became the youngest person to top the Sunday Times donation list by raising £ 20million in donations from supermarkets for groups tackling the problem.
He also forced the government to perform a series of U-turns on free school meals during the pandemic, ensuring they are extended until midterm and Christmas break last year.
In a Twitter thread, he wrote: “To clarify, I don’t need to associate with brands. I associate because I want to advance the work I do off the pitch and most of the fees I would receive contribute to it. “
He stressed that his relationship with Burberry means that “children have a safe place after school to feed them” – and a partnership with Macmillan means that “80,000 children now have a book of their own.
Rashford added: “Do I have more commercial appeal after the U-turns? I’m sure. But I’m also an international footballer for Manchester United and England. Why does there always have to be a motive? Why can’t we just do the right thing? “
His partnership with Burberry has enabled the label to make a number of donations to charities and youth clubs, including London Youth and Norbrook Youth Club in Manchester, which he attended as a child.
Rashford has been the target of racist abuse online after missing a penalty kick in the Euro 2021 final against Italy.
Graffiti was also left on a mural of his face in Manchester.