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Footballers' charitable gestures during coronavirus pandemic

Sports Mole highlights some examples of the charitable gestures made by footballers to help combat the coronavirus pandemic.

Fairly or unfairly, footballers' wages have been a hot topic of discussion over the past few days as the millionaire stars are asked to take a pay cut during the coronavirus pandemic.

Health secretary Matt Hancock suggested on Thursday that it is down to Premier League players to "play their part" by donating some of their weekly salary to the NHS.

However, many clubs across the continent, including the likes of Bayern Munich, Juventus, Barcelona and Manchester United, have already announced that pay-cut plans are in place.

Many players are going above and beyond to help out during this global emergency, meanwhile, which has already claimed the lives of more than 61,000 people.

Here, Sports Mole highlights some examples of the charitable gestures, ranging from simple donations to quirky initiatives.

Marcus Rashford in action for Manchester United on October 20, 2019© Reuters

Marcus Rashford

Manchester United striker Marcus Rashford last week helped to raise £100,000 for FareShare, the UK's largest charity for fighting hunger and food waste.

The donation will ensure that children who usually rely on free school meals will not go without food during the pandemic.

David de Gea

Rashford was perhaps inspired by United teammate David de Gea, who was thanked by the Community of Madrid president Isabel Diaz Ayuso for making a donation in the region of €300,000.

The six-figure sum will help De Gea's city of birth battle COVID-19, potentially saving the lives of numerous people in the process.

Manchester United midfielder Paul Pogba pictured on December 26, 2019© Reuters

Paul Pogba

Paul Pogba has offered his support to UNICEF by setting up a fundraising page and pledging financial support to children affected by coronavirus.

The Frenchman announced last month that he would double the fund total if his initial target of £27,000 was reached.

Ilkay Gundogan

Club rivalries have been put to one side during this testing period, with United and Manchester City joining forces to donate £100,000 to local food bank charities.

City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan has also done his bit by arranging shopping services for nursing staff in German town Heinsburg.

Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola during the Manchester derby on December 10, 2017© Reuters

Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho

Not strictly a current player, granted, but City boss Pep Guardiola has generously paid for around £920,000 worth of medical supplies in Barcelona.

Likewise, Tottenham Hotspur counterpart Jose Mourinho has lent a helping hand by putting together care packages for the elderly.

Christian Pulisic

America has been one of the countries hardest hit by the respiratory disease, and USA international Christian Pulisic has made a considerable donation to Feeding America.

The Chelsea midfielder is one of a number of US players to have contributed to the charity, which will helps those who are struggling financially.

Daniel James in action for Manchester United on September 14, 2019© Reuters

Kieran Tierney and Daniel James

Staying inside means an opportunity to play a lot more video games, something that Arsenal full-back Kieran Tierney and United midfielder Daniel James are using to their advantage.

The pair recently took part in Gareth Bale's #CombatCorona FIFA tournament, along with the likes of Luke Shaw, Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Jordan Pickford.

Aaron Ramsey

Of course, not just Premier League footballers are playing their part in helping those in need.

Former Arsenal ace Aaron Ramsey, now plying his trade for Juventus, has made a couple of £10,000 donations to the NHS in Wales.

Crystal Palace's Wilfried Zaha reacts on March 7, 2020© Reuters

Wilfried Zaha

Man United legends Gary Neville and Ryan Giggs offered up their Hotel Football to NHS staff, an initiative that Crystal Palace's Wilfried Zaha clearly took inspiration from.

The Ivory Coast international has offered free use of 50 properties to healthcare workers who are battling the coronavirus outbreak in central London hospitals.

Kasper Schmeichel

One campaign launched in the UK to provide care packages for the elderly has been given a financial boost by Kasper Schmeichel.

The Leicester City goalkeeper reached into his pocket to provide Age UK with £20,000 to carry out their Covid Care initiative in the East Midlands city.

Liverpool's Andrew Robertson pictured in Match 2020© Reuters

Andrew Robertson

Many footballers are looking to help those close to home, a case in point being the huge sums handed over by Liverpool's Andrew Robertson to aid six foodbanks in Glasgow.

Robertson was born in the Scottish city and has history for his charitable work, often out of the limelight.

Toby Alderweireld

Tottenham defender Toby Alderweireld's contribution to the cause comes in a slightly different form, having donated electronic tablets to hospitals and nursing homes.

With social interactions being restricted, the Belgian centre-back hopes to ensure nobody feels lonely in their time of need.

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Manchester United's David de Gea pictured on March 1, 2020
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