ENGLAND star Jadon Sancho is set to be given the freedom of his London borough – just days after teammate Bukayo Saka was recommended for the same honour.
The winger, 21, received vile racist abuse after seeing his penalty saved in Sunday's Euro 2020 final shootout against Italy – as did Saka.
After helping the Three Lions to a first major final in 55 years, Southwark Council will award him freedom of the borough, if formally agreed, for "his exceptional contribution to sport".
Sancho has also previously spoken out and acted upon horrific racism – something which "exemplifies the values that Southwark Council holds in highest regard".
Mayor of Southwark Barrie Hargrove announced his intention to award the footballer with the highest civic award the Council can give during a meeting on Wednesday night.
He said: "Watching Jadon play in the Euro tournament was incredible.
"I felt, like many residents, that he is a diamond in Southwark’s crown and we could not be more proud of him and what he achieved for this country – the team brought everyone together and gave us hope and joy when we needed it most.
"This is why I am recommending that he be considered for Freedom of the Borough, the highest accolade we can give.”
Sancho was born in Camberwell, south London in March 2000 and helped Southwark under 11s win the football tournament at the 2011 London Youth Games.
He joined Watford at the age of seven before developing at Manchester City's prestigious academy.
In 2017, Sancho bravely moved to Borussia Dortmund in Germany's Bundesliga where he became one of Europe's hottest prospects – and is now set to seal the deal on a move to Manchester United this summer.
Southwark Council leader Kieron Williams said: “Jadon is one of the best sportspeople this country has and that he is home-grown talent from this borough should be celebrated.
"He is an incredible role model to our young people and we want him to know that he did us proud.
"Like many others, I was deeply saddened and angry to see the racism players suffered after the final match – outrage that was echoed by Southwark’s residents. However it was fantastic to see the outpouring of affection and solidarity with our players.
"There is no place for racism – Southwark is a place which nurtures everyone, and that is why we have such exceptional talent playing for our country.
"Jadon exemplifies our Southwark Stands Together values and deserves the highest honour we can give.”
It comes after Arsenal winger Bukayo Saka was nominated for the Freedom of Ealing to show the council's pride at his phenomenal Euro 2020 performance.
Tearful Saka, aged just 19 and born in Ealing in September 2001, had to be consoled by manager Gareth Southgate after missing the decisive penalty to crown the Azzurri champions.
Ealing Council leader Peter Mason, who personally nominated Saka to become the youngest person to ever receive Freedom of the Borough, believes the star can hold his head high.
He said: "Just a few short years ago, Bukayo Saka was playing football on the Brentside Playing Fields and on the pitches at Greenford High.
“Everyone in Ealing shares an incredible sense of pride that one of our own represented England at Wembley on Sunday.
"His is a remarkable story of talent and achievement that everyone can take hope, inspiration and encouragement from.
“Neither he nor any of the England squad should be subjected to the intolerant, racist abuse as they have been in the last 48 hours. We don’t boo our heroes. We honour them.
“I’m delighted therefore to nominate him to be the youngest ever recipient of the Freedom of the Borough. I hope this will send a clear message that Saka is Ealing’s own, that we are proud of him, and that is one of our heroes.
“The entire England team has been an inspiration, both on and off the pitch, and shown our country how to pull together, not apart, even under the most unimaginable pressure. Saka and his teammates have embodied Ealing’s motto: 'Progress with Unity'.
“We thank all the squad and the team around them, and look forward to seeing them in action in the run-up to the World Cup next year."
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