'Try not to be too sad. I bet your mummy is very proud of you' are the moving words a seven-year-old Burnley schoolboy wrote to Marcus Rashford

'The people who are saying nasty things don’t matter, don’t listen to them. They need to grow up.'

That is the moving and heart warming message a seven-year-old Burnley schoolboy has sent to Marcus Rashford who was subjected to a tirade of racist abuse on social media after his missed penalty in the Euro 2020 final on Sunday night.

Upset by the criticism that Rashford and his team mates, Jadon Sancho and Bukayo Saka, received for failing to score in the shoot-out Alfie decided to put pen to paper and write the letter to cheer them up.

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Alfie said he hoped they were not 'too sad' and praised Rashford for being his inspiration to raise money for local foodbanks. And movingly Alfie said to the talented player: "I bet your mummy is very proud of you."

Alfie with the letter he has written to Marcus Rashford and his team mates

The caring youngster also wrote that he had loads of fun watching the tournament and he told the players to 'keep smiling.'

Alfie's letter comes in the wake of a Manchester mural of Rashford, which trolls defaced, was covered with notes of support. The act of vandalism has been by condemned by the Bishop of Burnley and leaders across the country.

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Earlier this year the Manchester United player sent a 'well done' message to the Brunshaw Primary School pupil after he retweeted a photograph of Alfie handing over 200 Easter eggs to Burnley Community Kitchen with the tagline 'Bless him, well done Alfie.'

The player, who was awarded an MBE for a campaign he spearheaded to urge the government to extend its provision of free school meals, responded to a tweet put out by Alfie Smith's proud mum, Lauren Hughes.

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Fans obliterated the abuse messages on the Rashford mural by posting messages of love and support (Getty Images)

Rashford's campaign stirred Alfie into action when he heard that some children were going hungry during the pandemic.

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He asked his family what he could do to help so they came up with the idea of walking the eqiuivalent of a marathon. Alfie raised the magnificent total of £1,200 by clocking up an average of three miles a day around his home in Brunshaw with his mum and dad, Jonathon Smith. The money was used to buy food to donate to local foodbanks.