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25th May 2017

LISTEN: Mark Chapman gives an emotional, inspiring speech about the city of Manchester

A moving tribute to a great city

Tony Cuddihy

“I’m proud to call Manchester my city.”

BBC presenter Mark Chapman, who comes from Manchester and lives there with his family, was working for 5 Live Sport on Wednesday in Stockholm, covering Manchester United’s Europa League win over Ajax.

Before the game, he spoke at some length about the events of Monday night at the Manchester Arena, where 22 people lost their lives in an attack at an Ariana Grande concert.

His words will stay with you, and this is what he said…

“I’m proud to call Manchester my city. The place where I grew up, the place where I live, and the place where my family and my children go out, like so many did on Monday night and never came back. 

“I love the place and I’m in love with the place. 

“The team here tonight are from that city, and many will want them to win for the city. Some fans of other clubs might not want them to win but do you know what? In the context of football, that’s fine, because football divides us, but only in a pantomime way. 

“What unites all our great cities is love, friendship, community and hopefully opportunity. Only, and just indulge me this one line, when it comes to Manchester, as Tony Wilson said, ‘we do things differently’.

“This is only a game of football, it doesn’t really matter. I’ll be honest with you, I don’t massively want to be here. I want to be at home cuddling my kids and telling them that we’ll go to the Arena again to a gig, and we’ll sing and we’ll dance but we will never forget the victims of Monday night. 

“But we are here, all of us are here and we will do our best to bring this to you as well as we possibly can. Treating it as a football match with importance and with so much emotion for people back home.”