Former Manchester United great Patrice Evra has spoken out about the social and racial injustice that he suffered as a child, and as a player.
The former Old Trafford favourite posted on his official Twitter account, where he talked about the regret he had after choosing to represent France as a young player instead of his native Senegal.
Evra, who earned 81 caps for Les Bleus, was born in Dakar, Senegal back in 1981 before moving to Paris as a young child.
But despite playing for the French U-21’s 11 times, Evra was given the option to switch to Senegal in 2004. But he chose to stick with France who he went on to captain later on.
13 year old Patrice could only have dreamed of this…
Today I spoke on the most famous podium in the world and demanded action on the billion children affected by violence. We can and we must change that.
Mama, I made it… 😁 pic.twitter.com/sFfUrSFevs
— Patrice Evra (@Evra) September 19, 2022
Evra has now backtracked on his initial choice and tweeted, “If I could go back, I would choose to represent my native country, Senegal, instead of France.”
Alluding not only to exclusion, but also to the obvious and widely documented division within the French National team of the time, Evra spoke of a painful lesson learned over the course of his illustrious international career.
The former United and France skipper has also spoken out this week about a cause that he has been fighting for — children’s education.
Having experienced a troubled childhood himself, Evra had struggled to learn and find the support he needed both at school and at home, as well as suffering abuse at the age of 13.
And the now 41-year-old explained in detail how he felt let down by the system in France, and why he intends to fight for a cause that is close to his heart.
He took this stance at the United Nations Transforming Education Summit and the importance of speaking out and the pride in doing so was clearly etched on the ex-Red Devil’s face as he exclaimed, “Mama, I made it!”
While referring to his own story, Evra pleaded for change and improvement of children’s educational needs at the summit, standing in front of the UN’s most important people.
Speaking as a “champion for children, and a champion for education”, the player United fans still to this day call “Uncle Pat”, will always be a champion of Old Trafford.