Marcus Rashford will miss Sports Personality of the Year shortlist despite public support for Manchester United’s free school meals campaign as the BBC has a headache
- Man United star Marcus Rashford will be dropped from the SPOTY shortlist
- The striker is the odds-on favorite to win the prize after popular campaigns
- Rashford has sparked calls for kids to get free school meals during the holidays
- But Sportsmail understands that the 22-year-old will miss the shortlist
Marcus Rashford will be dropped from the BBC Sports Personality of the Year shortlist despite being the bookies’ odds favorite to win the prize.
The Manchester United forward has been tipped to claim the award in December following his high-profile and popular free school meals campaign.
But Sportsmail understands that Rashford, 22, is likely to be missing out based on long-standing criteria for the award, stating that the shortlist should reflect “ athletic performance. ”
Marcus Rashford will miss the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2020 shortlist
The Man United star was a favorite for his campaign for free school meals
A jury will meet next month to determine the shortlist and while the criteria for 2020 have not yet been confirmed and the panel has the right to make changes, it has been set in stone for a number of years.
It is not expected to change unless there is a response to public pressure.
BBC bosses are aware of the potential for a backlash if Rashford is not included and would like to somehow honor him on the show on December 20 – which is held in Salford without the usual mainstream audience due to Covid-19- restrictions.
Rashford could be in the running for the Helen Rollason Award, given for “ outstanding achievement in the face of adversity, ” or a new award could be created to recognize his effort to end child hunger.
Public support for the England international had seen him jump ahead of Lewis Hamilton
The shortlist is usually announced in late November, although it wasn’t revealed until the evening of the program in 2018 – an option the BBC could repeat this year in an effort to avoid a long-running debate over Rashford.
Public support for Rashford has seen him jump out of Formula 1 above record-breaker Lewis Hamilton as the bookies’ favorite for the trophy, but that is causing the BBC a major headache.
The current SPOTY conditions state: “The panel will select a shortlist based on the following criteria: reflect UK sporting achievements on the national and / or international stage; represents the breadth and depth of British sport; and takes into account the ‘impact’ of a person’s sporting performance outside the sport in question. ‘
The popular 22-year-old will miss, as the award relates to athletic achievements
The SPOTY shortlist is determined by a panel of typically 12 people, including representatives from the BBC and the sports industry, and is chaired by Barbara Slater, Director of BBC Sport.
The panel is given a list of the top athletes of the year, drawn up by the SPOTY production team, although they may consider other candidates.
The panel then draws up a shortlist based on a ‘consensus vision’.
If consensus cannot be reached, a vote will take place. The criteria have not changed since 2012 – the following year the BBC was criticized for not having women shortlisted for 10 people.
BBC News has covered Rashford’s campaign extensively this year.
Clearly, Rashford would be in the running for the Helen Rollason Award in December
However, Match of the Day commentator Guy Mowbray was berated on Twitter last weekend after introducing coverage of United’s game with Chelsea by saying, ‘Whether you agree with Marcus Rashford’s goals or not, there is certainly admiration for his continued dedication to them. ‘
Mowbray explained that ‘broadcast rules for impartiality mean things have to be phrased in a certain way’ before clearing his social media account.
David Sullivan, co-owner of West Ham, has joined Rashford’s commitment to free school meals during the holidays by donating £ 25,000, while Manchester United in partnership with the FareShare charity will provide 5,000 meals for vulnerable children in October during the October holiday. .