England pair Jordan Henderson and Raheem Sterling have been made MBE’s in the Queen’s Birthday Honours on the eve of Euro 2020, along with former Three Lions manager Roy Hodgson.
Sterling has been honoured for his efforts in the fight for racial equality in sport, while Henderson is recognised for service to football and charity during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Former England manager Hodgson is also honoured on the list as he receives a CBE for services to football. The 73-year-old, who left his role as Crystal Palace boss at the end of the season, was England manager from 2012 until 2016.
Midfielder Henderson, 30, helped guide the Reds to Champions League success in 2019 and the Premier League title in the disrupted 2019-20 campaign.
Off the field, he also had a leading role in the #PlayersTogether initiative, which was announced in early April last year at the height of the coronavirus pandemic as football and other sports all come to a halt.
Premier League captains worked together to help establish a joint contribution fund which was directed to the NHS Charities Together group for distribution to good causes working to provide support to NHS staff and patients.
“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,” Henderson said.
“Huge numbers of football fans, from across the country, also displayed great generosity in donating. But the true heroes are the NHS staff; they put themselves in harm’s way to serve and protect us. Therefore I dedicate this to all the nurses, doctors, carers, porters, admin workers, cleaners, security personnel and every single individual who devotes their career and their lives to making the NHS the part of British life we are rightly most proud of as a nation.”
Sterling, part of the City side which won the Premier League title last season and reached the Champions League final against Chelsea, has continued to front anti-racism and discrimination campaigns.