Captain Rooney and the Red Devils celebrate their Europa League title. After a long moment of silence to reflect on Monday’s terrorist attack in Manchester that killed 22 and injured more than 100, the city’s own Manchester United lifted the Europa League trophy on Wednesday. It claimed Europe’s second-tier continental tournament in a 2-0 victory over Ajax Amsterdam in Stockholm.
Walsh’s poem “This is the Place”, which was recited to thousands of people attending a vigil for the victims of the massacre in Manchester, highlights the democratic power of poetry. Almost 200 years ago – when another atrocity, the Peterloo massacre, robbed Manchester of peaceful people who had gathered together in a protest, demanding the right to vote – poetry became a way of channelling the anger and grief that people felt. The compression of rage in Percy Shelley’s poem “England in 1819” where he sides with a “people starved and stabbed on the untilled field” is still rousing and, although without the searing anger, Walsh’s poem is also there with the people.
Arsene Wenger has (shock) remained tight-lipped about his own Arsenal future but has been talking about Alexis Sanchez remaining with the Gunners. Sanchez, 28, has just over 12 months left on his current Arsenal deal and the Chilean attacker is attracting interest from across the Premier League and Europe. With 24 goals and 10 assists in the Premier League this season, Sanchez would obviously be a huge loss to the Gunners if he did move on.