undreds of anti-racism protesters took the knee in front of the Marcus Rashford mural on Tuesday.
The black and white painting in Withington was defaced with racist graffiti after the Manchester United forward missed a penalty during England’s Euro 2020 final on Sunday.
Dozens of messages of support were placed on the mural to cover the abuse before it was restored by street artist Akse.
The crowds, which gathered from 6pm, held up placards and chanted ‘Black Lives Matter’.
Stand Up to Racism handed out posters to the hundreds of people who went to show their support.
The striker, 23, wrote a heartfelt social media post following the team’s loss to Italy. He said he felt like he had “let everyone down” by missing a penalty.
Scores of stars also messaged words of support — including England footballers Declan Rice and Jordan Henderson as well as Rio Ferdinand, Mason Greenwood and Stan Collymore.
F1 champion Lewis Hamilton, models Bella Hadid, Cara Delevigne and singer Anne Marie were also among the stars who showed their support.
Rashford’s club Manchester United also tweeted that “love always wins” after the mural was restored.
Withington Walls co-founder Ed Wellard, who commissioned the artwork, said the people responsible should be educated.
Earlier this week Rashford thanked fans for their support.
He said: “The communities that always wrapped their arms around me continue to hold me up. I’m Marcus Rashford, 23 years old, black man from Withington and Wythenshawe, South Manchester.
“If I have nothing else, I have that. For all the kind messages, thank you. I’ll be back stronger. We’ll be back stronger.”
Hundreds of protesters take the knee at Marcus Rashford mural