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LONDON – Wayne Rooney and Alan Shearer, England captains present and past, have urged soccer players to come forward with allegations of sexual abuse amid the growing scandal in the British game.
Rooney joined with other current captains of various English national teams in a video on safeguarding published for the Football Association and children's charity NSPCC.
Rooney says, "If you're a young boy or girl and you're upset, hurt or scared with the way someone behaves with you, please let someone you trust know now."
Shearer has urged "every club, from the grassroots up, must continue to look at what they're doing to prevent abuse happening to any kids today and in the future."
Former professionals have gone public over the last two weeks about the ordeals they went through as youngsters in youth soccer. It has led to about 350 people reporting incidents of child sexual abuse at soccer clubs to 18 British police forces investigating the scandal.
The FA and a number of clubs have launched internal investigations.