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Leeds match £25,000 pledged by players to Marcus Rashford’s campaign

Manchester United v Chelsea – Premier League – Old Trafford
(Image credit: Michael Regan)

Leeds have announced they will match the £25,000 donation pledged by the club’s playing squad in support of Marcus Rashford’s campaign for free school meals.

Hours after Leeds captain Liam Cooper revealed the players’ donation on Twitter, the club said they would stand “united” with those seeking to stop children going hungry in the half-term holidays.

Leeds tweeted: “@MarcusRashford We all stand united at this time, #LUFC will match the £25,000 donated by our players.”

Manchester United striker Rashford stepped up his campaign this week after the Government voted against a Labour motion to extend the school dinners scheme.

Leeds City Council announced its Healthy Holidays programme on Friday following Rashford’s increased efforts and Cooper responded on Twitter with the players’ donation.

Cooper tweeted: “Let’s do this Leeds! No children should ever go hungry. £25k guaranteed from the @lufc squad. We stand with you @Marcus Rashford.”

After the Government voted against extending the school dinners scheme, Rashford vowed to continue the fight and has been backed by many celebrities and politicians.

Cooper later said: “Me and the players are really fortunate and we are in a position to help.

“Therefore we are delighted to support the campaign from Leeds City Council, inspired by Marcus. No kids should go to bed hungry.”

Rashford told politicians to “stop stigmatising, judging and pointing fingers” as he warned a “significant number” of children will go to bed hungry and “feeling like they do not matter”.

He called on people to “unite” to protect the most vulnerable children, adding: “For as long as they don’t have a voice, they will have mine.”