Written by Reuters
26 Apr, 2019 | 9:58 am
Reuters – Manchester City’s England forward Raheem Sterling has been awarded The Integrity and Impact Award at this year’s BT Sport Industry Awards for speaking out on a range of social issues, including racism.
Sterling was recognized for his fight against racism in the sport and for using his platform to call for more action to be taken. He had said this month that more players needed to speak out when they suffered racism to eradicate it from the game.
“I thought it was just a personal experience that I was speaking on and I didn’t expect it to get so much attention. I just wanted to bring it to the attention of my audience that I had on my Instagram,” Sterling said as he received the award from his England coach Gareth Southgate Thursday (April 25) evening.
“It’s really pleasing to see people listening and trying and do better and make a change,” Sterling added. “Partly what happens when you’re trying to do good things, you have to set examples for you know – I keep saying younger kids than me, I’m only 24 myself – but you know, the next generation coming through.”
The 24-year-old also signed a manifesto earlier this week where he said clubs should be handed automatic nine-point deductions and ordered to play three games behind closed doors if their supporters indulged in racist behavior.
Sterling, who began his career at Liverpool, said the example of his former captain Steven Gerrard encouraged him to try to develop into a role model.
“Coming from Liverpool I had people around me like Steven Gerrard I looked up to and, you know, looking at him and thinking ‘what can I do within myself to be half the person and player he was’,” he added.
He said, “You take little things and each year you try and develop them and become better not just on the field but off it as well,”.
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