The footballing communtiy is coming together to fight the coronavirus pandemic sweeping across the globe.
Pretty much every major league across the world is on a temporary hiatus, with football in Europe all postponed apart from the Turkish top-flight – which is currently operating behind-closed-doors.
Whether football will return before the summer months is a question of little importance right now. The priority, of course, is the health of the people impacted by the Covid-19 virus.
As such, many in the footballing community has made significant donations to help fight the pandemic in a number of different countries.
Below, we’ve provided 12 examples of people in football using their vast resources to help the less fortunate and provide relief for the medical staff that are being rigorously overworked during this troubling time.
1. Leon Goretzka & Joshua Kimmich
This morning, the Bayern Munich stars announced they were setting up a platform entitled ‘WeKickCorona’, with the German’s pledging €1m to the new initiative.
Goreztka wrote on Twitter: “We can beat anyone on the pitch. But we only beat coronavirus together.”
2. Roman Abramovich
Chelsea’s oil-rich owner has announced that he will pay for NHS staff to sleep at the Blues’ Millennium Hotel at Stamford Bridge for at least the next two months.
This will allow staff in the west London area – one of the most prominent locations for the virus in the UK – to avoid long, disrupted commutes home.
3. Zlatan Ibrahimovic
The Swedish legend has set up fundraisers in Italy, the epicentre of the pandemic in Europe.
Zlatan wrote on Instagram: Italy has always given me so much and, in this dramatic moment, I want to give back even more to this country that I love.”
4. Marcus Rashford
The Manchester United striker has teamed up with FareShare to help provide food for children across the UK while the schools are closed.
Rashford’s donation is believed to be the single largest donation to the organisation in the last 12 months.
5. Sadio Mane
We all know the Liverpool forward is one of the nicest guys in the world, so he was always going to do whatever he could to help.
6. Lorenzo Insigne
Last week, Napoli’s talisman donated around £90,000 to hospitals around the Naples area to help fight the virus.
The Governor of the southern Italian region, Vincenzo De Luca, said: “I would like to thank Lorenzo Insigne among the most active people in the city for helping the hospitals of Naples. He gave us 100 thousand euros (£90,000) to fight coronavirus and help hospitals.”
7. Leonardo Bonucci
The Juventus defender and his wife, Martina Maccari, donated around €120,000 to the Turin City Hospital.
It’s the same hospital that saved the life of their son in 2016 after a serious medical condition was detected following hernia surgery.
8. Kasper Schmeichel
Leicester City’s goalkeeper has donated £20,000 to AgeUK to help protect the elderly amidst the coronavirus outbreak.
The Dane wrote after his donation on Thursday: “Now more than ever charities like Age UK need our help. Let’s do all we can to protect our elderly.”
9. Juventus owners
The owners of the Italian champions have donated around €10m (£9m) to help fight the coronavirus throughout Europe’s most affected country.
A statement on Juve’s website reads: “The Agnelli Family has made a €10 million donation to the Italian Civil Protection Department, as it manages the emergency at national level; and to Specchio dei Tempi /La Stampa (a social assistance organization which operates in the Region of Piedmont), to respond to the local health and social needs in the city of Turin and Piedmont.”
10. Gary Neville & Ryan Giggs
The two United legends co-own two hotels in Manchester – Hotel Football and The Stock Exchange – and both have been made available to NHS staff for free.
Neville said in a post on social media: “Over the last week we have been in consultation with the health services in the Greater Manchester area, in particular the Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust. Our 176 beds will be occupied by National Health Service workers and medical professionals from Friday onwards.”
11. Wilfried Zaha
The Crystal Palace winger co-owns a housing firm with Obi Willis named ZoProperties and has asked NHS workers to reach out the company.
They are offering more than 50 apartments across London to medical workers on the frontline free of charge.
12. Stockport County
Don’t worry, good-will gestures are not just reserved for the elite of world football. Today, Vanarama National League side Stockport announced they will be donating £75,000 to the cause.
The money will go to the Stockport NHS Foundation Trust Charitable Fund to help treat coronavirus patients.
In unprecedented times, it’s refreshing to read some feel-good stories isn’t it?
Let’s hope the footballing community continues to come together to fight this dreadful disease.
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