Raheem Sterling becomes an MBE for his services to racial equality in sport

Jesse Williams

By Jesse Williams

Jesse Williams

12 Jun 2021

England and Manchester City star Raheem Sterling was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for his services to racial equality in sport.

The 26-year-old forward, who has campaigned against racial injustice on and off the pitch continually since 2017 said:

“I am grateful to have been recognised, but my priority is to try to help to educate society and myself,” Sterling said. “If it doesn’t start from within, then there’s no way you can help others. I’m learning every day,”

“My motivation for racial equality is to get people to understand the difficulties people from diverse backgrounds face and create an environment where everybody is equal. I feel we are starting to make a step in the right direction, but we still have a lot of work to do.”

Liverpool captain  Jordan Henderson, also became an MBE, being recognised for his service to charity, particularly during Covid-19.

Henderson who formed the charitable fund, Players Together, which supported NHS good causes during the first coronavirus pandemic lockdown last spring said:

“My family and I feel greatly humbled to be recognised in this way, more so given the reason for it. There are many privileges that come from playing professional football, but having a platform to promote a charitable cause such as Players Together and NHS Charities Together is as big a privilege as any.”

Former England manager Roy Hodgson and tennis player Sue Barker were awarded CBEs for their respective contributions to sport.

Other notable recipients include former two time NBA All-Star, Luol Deng, recognised for his services to basketball, as well as former British sprinter Jeanette Kwakye and cricketer Ebony Rainford-Brent recognised for their services to sport, charity and broadcasting all becoming MBEs.