Patients, practitioners and professional footballers all extolled the virtues of exercise this week when Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata opened a new cancer treatment centre - complete with a state-of-the-art gym - at The Christie hospital in Manchester.
The Manchester United players cast their expert eyes over the treadmill, bike and other equipment which has been funded through the club’s partnership with the cancer centre and will benefit the people being treated at the Young Oncology Unit. Currently, young cancer patients have to walk across The Christie to the existing, shared gym but when the new Palatine Treatment Centre opens in June, all the bespoke facilities they need - for treatment and rehabilitation - will all be in one place.
“It’s a good gym and I think it’s important for them [the patients] that they won’t have to move between buildings to exercise," Mata told MUTV.
"It’s a very tough moment in their lives for them but I think with the new facilities here – like the gym, the chill-out area and the music room – they have everything they need to be a little bit happier."
Rooney has been a regular visitor to The Christie during the Reds' seven-year fundraising partnership with the hospital. In that time, he's seen at first hand how the good work of the Manchester United Foundation has helped the facilities to improve and develop.