Manchester United star Marcus Rashford has this evening taken to social media, to speak out for the first time on the back of his penalty shootout miss versus Italy.
Donnarumma the hero
Rashford and co. were of course back in action on Sunday, when England faced off with the Azzurri in the finale of Euro 2020.
The clash marked a mammoth one for both sides, but even more so for the former, with the Three Lions, before last night, having not tasted international glory since all the way back in 1966.
When all was said and done at Wembley, however, Gareth Southgate’s men, again, came up just short.
A fascinating 90 minutes, during which the hosts took the lead inside 120 seconds, before eventually succumbing to a Leonardo Bonucci equaliser, saw the two nations locked at a goal apiece following the full-time whistle.
Extra-time, in turn, ensued, followed by a dreaded penalty shootout.
And, after the hopes of a nation were placed on the 19-year-old shoulders of Bukayo Saka, Player of the Tournament Gianluigi Donnarumma proved decisive once more, notching his 2nd save of the shootout to send the European Championship trophy to Rome.
A step too far for England… but didn’t they do England proud.
— Match of the Day (@BBCMOTD) July 11, 2021
Rashford’s message and Saka support
Whilst Italy’s no.1, as a result, was subsequently hailed as a hero back in his home country, in contrast, the fallout across England proved equally swift as it did abhorrent.
In altogether predictable fashion, the trio of the aforementioned Saka, Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford – whose spot-kick misses ultimately proved decisive at Wembley – were subjected to a torrent of vile racist abuse across social media in the game’s aftermath.
Yes, three young black men, who took on the responsibility which so many others would unquestionably shirk, were singled out for abuse amid the most difficult night of their respective careers…
It must be noted, however, that such neanderthal behaviour, in turn, has since been met by a heartening wave of sheer positivity on the part of the English public.
And such messages of support, this evening, have been highlighted in Rashford’s first public message since Sunday’s finale.
Taking to Twitter, the Manchester United attacker posted a deep and insightful message, providing an insight into his current thought process, the togetherness in Gareth Southgate’s camp and his pride at pulling on the Three Lions jersey.
Perhaps most significant of all, though, are the attached photos of messages from young fans, highlighting their unrelenting support for Rashford and his teammates:
— Marcus Rashford MBE (@MarcusRashford) July 12, 2021
Also showered in love on the back of last night’s clash have been fellow young Lions Saka and Sancho, with the former’s Arsenal teammates having been particularly vocal in backing the 19-year-old across social media:
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang & Gabriel Magalhães on Instagram, showing their support to Bukayo Saka.
Aubameyang: “Proud of you my lil Bro!!! This will build your success you will see ❤️❤️❤️🌶”
Gabriel: “Your personality is amazing my brother. I’m proud of you. ❤️❤️ Love u ✨” pic.twitter.com/K3n0Q88WCx
— afcstuff (@afcstuff) July 12, 2021
— Daniel Ceballos (@DaniCeballos46) July 11, 2021
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