Few will deny that it has taken time for Sheffield United striker Oli McBurnie to win round some supporters following his big-money move in the summer.
Signed from Swansea for a near £20m fee, McBurnie got off a good start at Bramall Lane with a goal against Leicester City. However, it was another nine games before the striker his the net again.
In that time, a couple of off-field controversies seemed to be hindering McBurnie. An alleged drink-driving offence followed by trips back to watch Swansea sparked some fans into thinking the Blades may have made a mistake.
Since then, of course, the 23-year-old has proven his worth. Crucial goals in games against Brighton and West Ham, coupled with an increased performance level, have shown Chris Wilder was right to splash the cash.
But more than just being an on-field presence, McBurnie has this week showed he is maturing off the field, too.
A message bigger than football from McBurnie
In a week where political unrest has reached boiling point over in America, the Blades striker has taken time out to use his platform to have his say on the matter at hand.
In a mature and responsible post on his Twitter account, McBurnie details his thoughts on the #Blacklivesmatter movement. As he admits, he is no expert but provides honest insight and education to those who might be struggling to understand.
— Oli McBurnie (@oli_mcburnie) June 2, 2020
McBurnie’s comments on the subject and clearly, his passion over it, come across abundantly clear.
The last few months have shown more than ever that things exist that are far bigger than football. This, then, is another example of our beloved game paling into insignificance when it comes to other worldwide matters.
For McBurnie, though, it is a huge mark of him as a person. Yes, he’s still the outlandish character that Blades fans have grown to love in 2020. But beyond that, here he demonstrates a maturity, knowledge, and passion for a topic that we can all learn more about.
In a time when footballers are often chastised for certain behaviours, Oli McBurnie shows the best way possible for Premier League stars to use their platforms for good.
So, just shy of 150,000 views on his video, it’s a massive well done to the Sheffield United number nine.