Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford believes England stars would not have received abuse after the Euro 2020 final if three white players missed penalties against Italy last summer. Rashford was targeted by trolls with vile racist messages on social media after he failed with his spot kick at Wembley Stadium, along with his fellow black team-mates Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka, who also missed their efforts. The 24-year-old, who opened up on the episode to basketball icon LeBron James on his Shop YouTube series, said he did not feel white players would receive the same treatment from fans, claiming supporters ‘wouldn’t have noticed’.
Rashford appeared on the show alongside British actor Daniel Kaluuya, artist Rashid Johnson, marketing exectuvie Paul Rivera, entrepreneur Maverick Carter and James. When the group began speaking about the sickening abuse the three players received after the Three Lions lost on penalties – following a 1-1 draw in the final – Rashford was asked if he felt the level of hate would have been the same if white players were involved.
He said honestly that’s just the way he feels, adding that he doesn’t think it would have been the same. He also added that at the same time, he doesn’t think people would have noticed. He continued and added that he feels they just reacted how they felt, whether it was because it was three black guys or three white guys. He recalled when Man United legend David Beckham found himself under huge pressure from fans after his red card against Argentina at the 1998 World Cup and said it was part of the game.
It was Saka who missed the decisive kick to ensure Italy lifted the trophy, with the Arsenal star left in tears and needing to be consoled by his team-mates – and his misery was compounded by the abuse he received in the aftermath.