London, 02 October 2023 – Legends of Football, in aid of Nordoff and Robbins, the UK’s largest music therapy charity, honoured Arsenal goal-scoring hero Ian Wright and six-time FA Women’s Super League winning manager, Emma Hayes this evening at Grosvenor House.

The former England striker and Chelsea FC Women’s manager were officially unveiled at the prestigious event earlier this evening, joining an esteemed list of recipients including Pelé, David Beckham, Arsène Wenger and most recently, England manager, Gareth Southgate and Lioness hero, Ellen White.

On accepting the award, Ian Wright said, “It’s an absolute honour to receive the 2023 Legends of Football award. To be recognised alongside some of the game’s greatest figures in the Legends of Football Hall of Fame, including my old boss, Arsène Wenger is unbelievable. 

“Music has been so powerful for me throughout my life and career, and to see how Nordoff and Robbins use music to help people connect and communicate is truly special.”

On the announcement of her award, Emma Hayes said, ‘‘I’m thrilled to be recognised amongst some of the biggest names in the game and alongside a true footballing legend like Ian Wright. 

“It’s an honour to be associated with such an amazing charity like Nordoff and Robbins, they play a hugely important role in improving the lives of people across society through music. Music therapy is such a creative way of communicating with people, and I hope we’ve raised plenty of money tonight to continue to support their incredibly valuable work.” 

In attendance tonight were a host of stars from football and music including: Jermaine Defoe, Dan Walker, Rachel Yankey, Wes Morgan, Sammy Lee, Alan Smith, David Dein, Niall Quinn, Perry Groves, Paul Merson, Alex Scott, Pete Tong, Millie Bright, Karen Carney, Alan Pardew, Sean Dyche, Steve Parish and Vicky McClure.  

Sandra Schembri, CEO, Nordoff and Robbins, said: “It was fantastic to see such an array of footballing royalty come together to celebrate the careers of Ian Wright and Emma Hayes at this year’s Legends of Football ceremony. We are truly grateful to all those who donated to Nordoff and Robbins across the evening, raising a spectacular £280,000 that will go directly towards helping people from all walks of life to experience true inclusion and belonging through the power of music therapy.”

Proceeds from the evening’s fundraising will go towards supporting Nordoff and Robbins Music Therapy, the UK’s largest music therapy charity.

Legends of Football Chairman, Geoff Shreeves and Kelly Cates hosted the star-studded evening, with chart-topping singer-songwriter Tom Grennan performing as the headline musical act.

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