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Marcus Rashford awarded PFA Merit Award following his efforts to combat child poverty

Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford vows to find ‘long-term answers’ to child poverty in the UK after he was awarded the PFA Merit Award.

The England international stepped up and forced the UK government into a U-turn over it’s free school meals policy during lockdown, which will ensure children in need would receive meals across the summer.

Rashford has also formed a child food poverty task force by linking up with the country’s biggest supermarkets and food brands.

The 22-year-old was presented with the special accolade as recognition for his remarkable efforts.

‘It’s obviously a huge honour and I just hope it encourages and promotes other players to do things to help as much as they can,’ the United forward told the club’s official website.  

 ‘What we’ve done so far is only a short-term answer and me and my team behind me are just trying to find plans on how we can help these children for the rest of their childhood really and long-term answers to the problem. 

‘At the moment we don’t have the answers but we’ll do our best to try and find them and progress the situation that they’re in the best way we can.’

Rashford said he came up with the plan to try and help people following a phone conversations with the rest of his family.

He said: ‘I was injured during lockdown and at the beginning I was working towards getting back with the team and stuff like that but there were conversations going on saying there might not be games until September. 

‘When I was sat at home I just needed something to work towards and a goal to achieve. 

‘So that was just something I spoke about with my brothers over the phone and the rest of my family. We just tried to find the best way to try and help people.’

Rashford scored 22 goals in all competitions last season despite missing time through injury.

With an ever-strengthening squad, the youngster said he was excited for the season to start.

He said: ‘We missed out on those trophies (Carabao Cup, FA Cup and Europa League) but by very fine margins. 

‘Hopefully next year we can go that extra step. Trophies is what drives this club and it’s what’s important to all the players so it’s something we need to have in the future and I think the players understand that. I’m just looking forward to being involved in those games.”

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