Why Rashford should not be up for Sports Personality of the Year

Keep Sport’s Personality About Sport Not Politics BY Dan Smith

I grew up watching The Sport’s Personality Of The Year Awards, it always reminds me that we are on the road to Christmas. Yet at a time where it seems the public want to campaign against everything, where every issue is put up for debate, where words are protested against …. I applaud the BBC for not considering Marcus Rashford for its main award.

Let me stress this is not tribalism, it has nothing to do with who I support.

The Manchester United Star has done an amazing job, using his profile to help youngsters more than any politicians have this year.

Earlier this year the striker encouraged Conservatives to do a U turn in providing free school meals even during the lockdown.

When a motion to have that extended to the current holidays was rejected the star again challenged the government, with a current petition having over a million signatures.

He deserves as many plaudits as he gets for tackling poverty, including his MBE, yet that doesn’t mean we now change the criteria of every award ceremony just because we want Rashford to win to make a point to the Prime Minister.

A panel has the duty of putting together a shortlist with the entry requirements being a nominee ‘ which reflects a UK sporting achievement on the national or international stage, represents UK Sport and takes into account impact within and beyond the sport.

That’s been the point of the evening since it was created in 1954, to celebrate a year of the best sporting achievements by our British Men and Women.

Off the pitch, Rashford is doing work far more important than any sport but like a music award would be based on music, or a film award judged on films, you can’t ignore the Sporting part of a trophy called Sports Personality award.

Simply based on sport, he shouldn’t be in the conversation. So what do some people do?
They campaign, they protest, they ask for the wording to be changed. And I’m mentally tired of it. 2020 has been the year of lets challenge everything.

Don’t call a he a he
Don’t tell me to wear a mask
Let’s remove this statue
Let’s remove words from songs
Don’t hold a door open for a lady

I even read an article the other day where Toy Story 4 was promoting drink driving.

I’m tired. And sport, I thought, was meant to be our escape. How many times does a franchise claim sport and politics don’t mix? Yet an evening planned to give a few hours to celebrate sporting achievements has become political.

Either organizers are pressured to put Rashford forward for the public vote or feel inclined to create a separate award to tick a PR box.

Either way it ruins a proud evening for the likes of Lewis Hamilton who has every right to win a sporting award more than Rashford.

Should someone number one at their genre now lose out on recognition if they choose not to involve themselves in politics?

I find it hard to see that many would be against someone ensuring 1.3 million children got fed over the summer, but it’s still technically politics.

It’s still a current issue that a majority of MP’s have said shouldn’t be extended, believing it’s a priority to spend money elsewhere.

Do I want to hear about politics when watching sport?

This year has been miserable.

Let us have an evening where we can for a few hours escape from reality.

Isn’t that what sport is for?

Be Kind In The Comments

Dan Smith

Tags Lewis Hamilton rashford


  1. Rashford is much more believable in his quest to change school meal policy in the UK.

    And because he is charitble, it has not stopped him from performing for his club.

    Rashford has been pushing for this since he was a teenager and has kept going for it.

    Not using it as some sort of publicity, propaganda and social media PR stunt.

    Good for you Rashford.

    1. So because it’s not Ozil it’s not a PR stunt ?
      Rasford as done an amazing job with the subject ,but just remember Ozil as been doing this for years ,only takes a 1 minute search to find out what he has done ,maybe you should try it Goonster .

      1. They are both giving, which is good. But one seems to use it as some sort of media “Look, I am such a nice guy, look at all that I am doing for the poor. So stop criticising my poor performances, attitude and mentality on the field and only concentrate on “My social media charity”.

        Lets not beat around the bush.
        It’s no coincidence that whenever the spotlight is on him for poor performances that’s when his charity good guy efforts become a thing.
        It has gotten worse today. It all went into overdrive since the Emery era. We hardly knew about his charity during the Wenger era because wenger just cuddled him and let him get away with everytint.
        The moment his performances start getting pointed out in the Emery, when criticising his performances and attitude start then all of a sudden his social media charity photo-ops / selfies go into overdrive.

        Every time Emery benched him he would then start pushing out how giving he is on his socials. Selfies and all “Look look, i just donated this much to these poor people. So can you stop criticising me on other matters.” Smh

        It absolutely makes some of us suspicious and skeptical. Whenever he is being called out for his poor attitude, mentality and performances on the pitch is when his charity work is most pushed by his PR / Social media management. He donates then plasters it over social media with Selfies to go.

        Called out for refusing a pay cut. All of a sudden he gets buy 10’s of thousands of masks for some poor people in Africa and plasters it all over social media.

        Arsenal make 50 or so employees redundant. Ozil is quite on that. But the moment Gunnersaurus is revealed as one of the 50 or so employees, he jumps in on saying how he will pay for his salary, plasters it over his social media.

        Rashford is confronting the government head-on. He is not using it as some social media Stunts to cover for his on field non performances.

        Thanks for giving but stop using it as something to hide behind when you are underperforming.

  2. I think that Rashford has been a stand out star this year in what he has achieved for the hungry in society and thoroughly deserved his MBE . He is also a very good football player but not Sports Personality of the Year. I don’t know if he would qualify for a different award on the show though

    For me it is Lewis all the way. What a brilliant racer and what an achievement to beat Schumacher’s record. He is still going strong in his mid 30’s with no sign of giving up yet.

  3. If we are taking the wording to mean exactly what it says then Sports ” Personality” of the year, whether you like him or not, should go to Ronnie O’Sullivan not only for his achievement in winning another World Championship but because he has got a personality.

  4. Rashford demanded and got 200k per week even during lock down. His salary would pay for 10 million school lunches. If he took a 99 % salary cut during lock down he would earn my respect. Why is someone on 200k per week when they did not play given any respect at all? Ridiculous.

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