SOCCER AID 2008 Sunday 7th Septe

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Wembley Stadium Hosts Soccer Aid 2008 Please quote ticketing details in all copy
World Cup legends and top celebrities go head-to-head in an England versus The Rest of The World football match, as Soccer Aid 2008, in aid of UNICEF and its partners, returns to ITV1. With Ant and Dec hosting, this year‟s event takes place live on the hallowed turf of Wembley Stadium where the crowd will be treated to a unique opportunity to see football legends take to the pitch alongside their celebrity counterparts. Portsmouth boss Harry Redknapp is stepping up to manage England with Bryan Robson assistant managing and his squad includes: Football legends Jamie Redknapp, Alan Shearer, Teddy Sheringham, David Seaman, Graham Le Saux and Des Walker and rugby and Dancing on Ice star Kyran Bracken, singer Craig David, TV presenter Angus Deayton, Harry Potter actor Tom Felton, Hollyoaks actor Chris Fountain, GMTV’s Ben Shephard, singer Gareth Gates, McFly’s Danny Jones, actor Hugo Speer, Heart 1062 radio presenter Jamie Theakston, and TV presenter Jonathan Wilkes. Meanwhile, legendary Scot Kenny Dalglish ably assisted by Ian Rush will take charge of the Rest of the World and players hoping to make it into his starting line up include: Westlife’s Nicky Byrne, Heroes actor Santiago Cabrera, Former Labour spin doctor Alastair Campbell, TV presenter Gethin Jones, comedian Patrick Kielty, rugby ace Kenny Logan, cricketer Brian Lara, Sex and the City actor Gilles Marini, singer Brian McFadden, Gordon Ramsay, Love Actually star Rodrigo Santoro and legends Jaap Stam, Franco Baresi, Romario, Luis Figo, Paulo Di Canio and Claudio Taffarel Gordon Ramsay returns to captain Rest of the World, but team England have a new skipper. Robbie Williams is passing on his captain‟s armband, and the responsibility of deciding who will take his place is in the capable hands of manager Harry Redknapp. As the originator of the Soccer Aid concept, Robbie is confident that again the match will be of huge benefit to UNICEF‟s work around the world. Robbie Williams says: "Being able to help so many people through Soccer Aid was one of the true highlights of my life. I‟m gutted that this time round my knee isn‟t up to it so unfortunately I‟m out of the game. But I hope that everyone involved has the time of their life like I did, raises loads of money for UNICEF and that the best side wins.” Tim Lovejoy and Louise Redknapp will bring all the action from the sidelines while pundits and special studio guests will deliver their live analysis of the beautiful game. Each squad comprises eleven celebrities and five world cup greats. With less than a week for the players to train and bond before the big game, the pressure is on to get match fit and performance ready.

The brainchild of UNICEF ambassador Robbie Williams and Jonathan Wilkes, Soccer Aid which was last held at Old Trafford in 2006, attracted a host of world class players and celebrities including Diego Maradona, David Ginola, Angus Deayton, Patrick Kielty, Gianfranco Zola, Alastair Campbell, Paul Gascoigne and Jamie Redknapp. The all star match raised an impressive £2.6 million for UNICEF‟s work with partners for children around the world. Last time round, England reigned victorious at Old Trafford. But on new turf with new teams, at the new Wembley Stadium, it‟s a clean slate. With all players determined to score that winning goal and lift the prestigious Soccer Aid 2008 trophy, it‟s anyone‟s game. Soccer Aid is raising funds for UNICEF‟s health, education and protection work with vulnerable children all over the world. UNICEF helps children to survive and thrive in more than 190 countries worldwide, working with partners to provide emergency support and long-term development solutions. UNICEF is funded entirely by voluntary contributions. Produced by Initial, an Endemol Company for ITV1. Soccer Aid has been commissioned for ITV1 by ITV‟s Controller of Alternative Programming Layla Smith and the Executive Producers are David Staite and Nic McNeilis. Soccer Aid takes place on Sunday 7th September at Wembley Stadium

Please quote ticketing details in all copy For tickets to Soccer Aid 2008, call 0871 230 7148 or go to Tickets are available from 0900 on Monday 21st July (Calls are charged 10p a minute from a BT landline. Costs from other networks may be higher. And calls from mobiles will be considerably higher )
For more information on how Soccer Aid will benefit UNICEF and its partners and how the public can get involved in football fundraising, visit

For more information about Wembley Stadium please visit Wembley Stadium is a public transport destination. For information about getting to Wembley please visit

Manager Harry Redknapp (supported Arsenal in his youth) Harry Redknapp is the current manager of Portsmouth in the English Premier League. He son is Jamie Rednapp and he is also uncle to Chelsea player Frank Lampard. His playing career began at West Ham United and then later on in the years went into management. Assistant Manager: Bryan Robson (supported Newcastle Utd in his youth) Robson is best known for playing in midfield for Manchester United, where he was the longest serving captain in club history. Robson began his playing career at West Bromwich Albion, before moving on to Manchester United. Towards the end of his playing career he moved into management Celebrity Players Kyran Bracken (Supports Liverpool) Former England rugby union player Kyran played for Saracens, Bristol and Waterloo RFC. He studied law at Bristol University who he played rugby for and then became a qualified solicitor. He had a trial at Liverpool FC where he scored three goals but favoured playing rugby. Bracken starred in and won the second series of hit ITV1 show „Dancing on Ice‟ and has recently put the finishing touches to his own ice dance show. Craig David Craig David has released four studio albums and performed at countless venues such a St Mary‟s football stadium in his home town of Southampton. At 19, he become Britain‟s youngest solo artist to reach number one. Craig is releasing his Greatest Hits later this year. Angus Deayton (Favourite Team Manchester United) Actor, writer, musician, comedian and television presenter Deayton is best known as the presenter of the satirical panel game Have I Got News for You. He showed early promise as a footballer, and had a trial with Crystal Palace. Deayton played for the England team in Soccer Aid 2006. Tom Felton Actor Tom Felton is best known for his role as Draco Malfoy, the arch enemy of wizard Harry Potter in the series of movies based on the books by JK Rowling. He has also starred in films including „Anna and the King‟, „The Borrowers‟ and „Second Sight.‟ Chris Fountain Actor Chris Fountain is best known for his role as Justin in teen soap Hollyoaks for which he won Best Actor at the British Soap Awards 2008. He wowed TV audiences in the most recent series of Dancing on Ice and was the runner up, coming a close second to Suzanne Shaw. Chris also competed in the Dancing on Ice live tour. Gareth Gates (Leeds United F.C) Singer Gareth Gates first came to the spotlight in ITV talent show Pop Idol where he finished as runner up. Signing with Sony BMG he had a string of hits including Unchained Melody and Spirit in the Sky. Gareth most recently appeared in ITV1‟s Dancing on Ice and toured with the show after the series finished. Danny Jones ( Supports Bolton Wanderers) Danny Jones is one of the lead vocalists and guitarists in the British pop punk band McFly. Jones has co-written all three of McFly's studio albums with his fellow band members. In March 2005 he took part in a Tsunami football match for charity.

Ben Shephard (West Ham) One of GMTV‟s main presenters, Ben also currently presents Who Dare Sings His previous presenting credits include MTV, The Bigger Breakfast, T4 and The Xtra Factor. A competitive sportsman he boxed and won against singer Lemar in March 2008 for BBC One's Sport Relief. Ben also took part in Soccer Aid 2006. Hugo Speer ( favourite team Leeds United) Hugo began his acting career appearing in TV series The Bill and Heartbeat before his first notable appearance as "Guy" in the film The Full Monty. He has appeared in Men Behaving Badly, dramas Clocking Off, The Last Detective, Boudica and The Rotters' Club , as well as the 2005 BBC adaptation of Dickens' Bleak House. Most recently he appeared alongside Martine McCutcheon in Echo Beach. Jamie Theakston Television and radio presenter Jamie Theakston currently presents Hearts Breakfast show on London‟s Heart 1062 with Harriet Scott. He has presented sports and entertainment programmes including Live & Kicking, Top of the Pops, The Priory, The Games and The Oscars for Sky. Last year Jamie produced and presented The Search on Channel 4. Jonathan Wilkes TV presenter Jonathan Wilkes and Robbie Williams first came up with the idea for Soccer Aid one evening at the pub and the resulting event was Soccer Aid 2006 which raised £2.6m for UNICEF and its partners. As a teenager, Jonathan was part of the Everton youth team but then was released and subsequently had trials for Chester and Crewe. Legends Jamie Redknapp Former professional footballer Jamie Redknapp has played for England and Liverpool. He started off his career at AFC Bournemouth in 1989 but then made the move to Liverpool where he spent 11 incredible years. After a time at Tottenham, he went to Southampton where he subsequently retired due to injury. Jamie is now a BBC football and Sky sports pundit. David Seaman Former English goalkeeper Seaman most notably played for Arsenal and most recently with Manchester City. He was awarded the MBE in 1997 for services to the sport. During his time at Arsenal he won many medals including three league championships (1991, 1998, 2002), four FA Cups (1993, 1998, 2002, 2003), the League Cup in 1993 and the European Cup Winners Cup in 1994. During this time he also played in the 1998 and 2002 World Cups, and Euro 96 and Euro 2000, and is England's second-most capped goalkeeper with 75 caps. He took part in ITV‟s Dancing On Ice and has since toured with the series. Alan Shearer Footballing legend, Shearer is hugely missed on the field. Although he is best known for his days at Newcastle, Shearer‟s talent became recognised hugely during his time at Blackburn after his successful time at Southampton where he scored a Hat-Trick on his debut. Shearer has been named as the PFA player of the year and is the Premier Leagues all time scorer. Following retirement, Shearer has founded the Alan Shearer Academy Scholarship. Teddy Sheringham Sheringham began his professional career at Millwall in 1982 at the age of sixteen. A striker he has had a hugely successful career winning almost every domestic honour available with his clubs, most notably the treble with Manchester United. He also represented England at international level. Graham Le Saux: Le Saux was signed for Chelsea in 1987 he made his debut for the club two years later and had become a regular by the 1991 season. In August 1997, Graeme became the most

expensive defender in English football when he returned to Chelsea in a £5 million deal. He was capped 36 times for England.

Des Walker: Des Walker was signed by Nottingham Forest in 1982 as an apprentice. Brian Clough gave Des his debut in March 1984 at the age of 18 and Forest ended the season in third place. In 1989 Forest won their first trophy for nine seasons when, with Des in outstanding form, they won the League Cup. He enjoyed a long association with Sheffield Wednesday, making more than 300 appearances under eight different managers, becoming a fans' favourite and team captain. His international career ended with 59 caps, including all seven of the games at Italia 90.

Manager Kenny Dalglish (supported Rangers in his youth) Former Scottish international football player Dalglish was famous for his successes with Celtic in the 1970s and with the English club Liverpool in the 1970s and 1980s. In 2004, Kenny and his wife Marina founded The Marina Dalglish Appeal to raise money for breast cancer funding Assistant Manager: Ian Rush: One of Liverpool‟s finest strikers and former Captain of Wales, Ian Rush joins Soccer Aid for the first time this year. His attacking partnership with Kenny Dalglish at Liverpool is regarded as being one of the greatest and most successful in the history of English and European football, and the partnership is reunited for Soccer Aid 2008. Celebrities Nicky Byrne Nicky is part of the hugely successful Irish band Westlife who have sold over 40 million albums worldwide. Before joining the band, Nicky was a professional football player, joining Leeds United as a goalkeeper in 1995. He was a squad member of the FA Youth Cup winning team of 1997. After two years at Leeds he returned to Ireland and played minor league football. Alastair Campbell (Favourite football team Burnley F.C) Campbell served as Director of Communications and Strategy for the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1997 to 2003. Before this he was became the Political Editor of the Daily Mirror, the largest circulation left-wing paper. He played in Soccer Aid 2006 Patrick Kielty TV presenter and stand up comedian Patrick Kielty is known for presenting shows such as the BBC‟s „Fame Academy‟ and „Love Island‟ for ITV1. Patrick played in the 2006 Soccer aid as a Goal Keeper for ROW replacing Peter Schmeichel. Brian Lara Brian Lara is a professional cricketer for the West Indies and holds the record for the highest individual test score from a batsman. He retired from professional cricket in 2007. Gilles Marini Gilles Marini exploded onto the big scene as Dante, the casanova in 2008‟s “Sex and the City” movie. Gilles has been seen on television in Ugly Betty,Dirty, Sexy Money, Criminal Minds, Windfall and in several soap operas including The Bold and the Beautiful and Passions.

Gordon Ramsay (Scottish Club Rangers) Gordon Ramsay returns to Soccer Aid to captain the Rest of the World team. A world renowned chef, Ramsay has fronted successful TV programmes including Hell‟s Kitchen, Ramsay‟s Kitchen Nightmares and The F Word. He now fronts Hells Kitchen in the US. Ramsay is one of only three chefs in the UK to maintain three Michelin Guide stars for his restaurant. Ramsay was chosen to play football for Warwickshire at the age of 12. His football career was marked by a number of injuries and due to this turned his attention onto cooking. Kenny Logan Kenny plays wing for London Scottish and Scotland, Kenny and his wife Gabby Logan also took part in the fifth series of the BBC celebrity dancing programme Strictly Come Dancing. Gethin Jones Gethin is a television presenter best known for co-presenting Blue Peter; He has made a couple of guest appearances in Doctor Who (2006 and 2008). In 2007 Jones was a contestant in Series 5 of Strictly Come Dancing, achieving third place. Santiago Cabrera Santiago is best known for his role as Isaac Mendez in the popular NBC series Heroes and his preparing to hit the UK screens as Lancelot in the forthcoming BBC drama series Merlin. Rodrigo Santoro Rodrigo played the character of Karl, the "enigmatic chief designer" and love interest of Laura Linney's character, in the romantic comedy Love Actually, alongside Colin Firth, Hugh Grant, Emma Thompson, Keira Knightley and Rowan Atkinson. He also starred in 300 as Persian emperor Xerxes. Legends Japp Stam Now retired, Dutch footballer Stam was nicknamed the Dutch Destroyer on the pitch. He was twice voted Best Defender in the 1999 and 2000 Champions League. Franco Baresi Franco Baresi is an Italian youth team coach and former football defender with A.C. Milan, acknowledged as one of the greatest defenders ever to play the game. Romario Or Romário de Souza Faria, was the center half that helped the Brazil national team to win the 1994 FIFA World Cup. Known as one of the most prolific strikers of the 1990‟s he had successful tenures with PSV Eindhoven and Barcelona. He retired at 42, well beyond the years of many a professional. Paulo Di Canio Having played for two of Italy‟s biggest clubs (Lazio and Juventus), Di Canio joined the Premiership with Sheffield Wednesday. He was the club‟s top scorer in the 97/98 season becoming a firm favorite with fans. Di Canio is famous for an incident on the pitch in 1998, where he pushed referee Paul Alcock to the ground after being sent off.

Luis Figo He is one of the best soccer players in the world, having played for FC Barcelona, Real Madrid, and Sporting Lisbon. He won the prestigious 2000 European Player of the Year Award, as Europe's top player as selected by France Football. He also won the 2001 FIFA World Player of the Year award. He made headlines around the world when he left his beloved FC Barcelona for arch rivals Real Madrid.

CLAUDIO TAFFAREL Cláudio André Mergen Taffarel (born May 8, 1966 in Santa Rosa, Brazil) is a former football (soccer) goalkeeper, who backstopped Brazil to victory at the 1994 World Cup.

Harry Redknapp Team: England Manager
“Everyone will have a job to do and we’ll all muck in when we need to.” Portsmouth manager Harry is hoping to lead his England team to victory in Soccer Aid 2008 and is sure that his team will share in his enthusiasm. “All the players here tonight, while perhaps feeling privileged to be involved, will want to win. Every game is one players want to win, no matter the occasion. If you‟ve been a professional player you develop that passion and that never leaves you.” Harry‟s looking forward to working with his whole squad but isn‟t expecting to uncover too much talent in his celeb players! “You can‟t disrespect the quality of the celebrity players, because a lot of them play, but there‟s a big difference between playing regularly and playing regularly at the highest levels. I‟ve seen or two of them play and until I‟ve seen them all I won‟t make too much of a judgement. One thing‟s for sure, I‟ve definitely met a few celebrities who think they can play!” One thing Harry knows will help is if his team work well together in training. “By the game, we‟ll have been together for a week already and I‟m hoping that it would have been a good crack. The more fun you can have in that week can sometimes dictate what happens in the game, because team spirit is important in games like this when you haven‟t had long to prepare. Everyone will need to get used to each other and we‟ll have fun doing that, I‟m sure. Everyone will have a job to do for the time and it‟s important that if we all get on together, we‟ll all muck in when we need to.” Harry‟s not too worried about being up against Rest of World manager Kenny Dalglish, revealing that the pair are old friends. “It‟s been a while since I‟ve faced Kenny Dalglish in the dugout! It will be lovely to see him, he‟s a legend there‟s not doubt about that. As a player at Liverpool and a manager – he‟s very special. We‟re good friends and Kenny wanted to play golf this week, I‟m sure his reasons had nothing to do with trying to find out our tactics!”

Kyran Bracken
Team: England
“I might have to try and take my rugby skills onto the pitch, if I’m allowed!” Rugby legend and Dancing on Ice champion Kyran Bracken is hanging up his skates and taking to the football pitch in this year‟s Soccer Aid. Having wowed the audiences with his ice skating skills in series 2 of the ITV hit entertainment series, Kyran is worried that he might not have the same success on the pitch.

“I‟m really nervous about all of it! I used play when I was younger but I haven‟t kicked a football since I was about twelve but I might pick it up you never know! I might have to try and take my rugby skills onto the pitch, if I‟m allowed! I think there will be lots of tackling!” Heading back to Wembley for the first time since retiring from Rugby, Kyran admits that he is looking forward to the experience. “It will be really good but also feel very strange. I was in that environment for so long because of what I‟ve done in the past but I haven‟t been out onto the ground at Wembley for a while. Its going to be nerve wracking, it‟ll feel like a rugby match in itself! I just hoping I can stay on two feet and not make a complete fool of myself!” The rugby star confesses that both England and The Rest of The World will be even more competitive than at the first 2006 Soccer Aid tournament in which England won 2-1, but he‟s worried his lack of footballing skills may be an advantage for the opposition. “Everyone wants to win and both teams will be trying their hardest score that winning goal. The professionals have always got the upper hand haven‟t they? Whilst they might not have the pace they‟ve got the knowledge. But the other celebrities have nothing to fear, if they think they think they are the worst player just look at me!” Having successfully swapped his rugby boot for ice skates, Kyran reveals that he will be much more nervous about coming out onto the pitch at Wembley on match day than he was skating on the TV show. “I was so nervous when I was skating on Dancing On Ice, but as the weeks went on I became a much more confident skater, so I would have to say I am more nerves about playing in Soccer Aid - let hope I can hold my nerves for this too!”

Craig David
Team: England
“I want the scouts out there to sign me after this game, although I don’t know if Chelsea can afford me!” Singer-songwriter Craig David is thrilled to be part of Soccer Aid 2008 and is determined to give the Rest of the World team a run for their money, especially as he won‟t be in goal. “I used to play goalkeeper for my school which led onto playing Sunday league football at quite a high level. For me, getting out of the goal is good. You can get the glory whereas in goal you get all the blame. I‟ll be playing midfield and I‟m comfortable playing there“ “My tactic is to win, simple as that. Obviously we can‟t turn into Pele overnight. It‟s all about getting the team to gel really well, and as long as everyone listens to the manager we should be alright. It‟s about taking the opportunity to go for a goal, have a go, take a chance and let go and I‟m definitely going to do that.”

Craig is revelling in the opportunity to get on the pitch alongside such legendary players. “Schmeichel is a goalkeeper who is one of the best from the 90‟s and to get the ball past him will be pretty tricky but would be amazing. He‟s a player who has definitely still got it. In the past, I‟ve played against some of the other celebrities like Ben Shepherd. He‟s really good, and when he‟s on the pitch he is very competitive. When he plays as a defender he is really strong to get the ball past, and I‟m glad he‟s on my team!” With preparation the key, Craig is taking this match seriously and is will be taking on some mental preparation as well as physical. “I will be getting out all my old goal videos on VHS and checking out my moves from when I played in the old games. That will certainly bring back those old memories.” “So much of this match is going to come down to fitness and to be able to be a bit ballsy out there on the pitch. I‟m fairly fit anyway and I‟ve been doing a lot of cardio work to prepare and just trying to get that up. If you can last 90 minutes out there, you are one to watch. I think that‟s where the players that can do that will really show their ability because by running around that pitch they will end up causing trouble while others are burning out.” Craig knows that going out onto the hallowed turf of Wembley Stadium is going to be a daunting task. “That excitement of playing with the England shirt on at Wembley is going to immense when we first get out there and I can anticipate that this combined with the adrenalin will have everyone running around like headless chickens for a bit. I hope we will all be able to calm down and get a bit more composed and focus and appreciate what‟s going on.” Famous for his music, Craig laughs that perhaps after this game, his future could lie elsewhere. “My dream would be for the football scouts out there to sign me after this game. Although I don‟t know if Chelsea has enough money to sign me!” A devout Southampton supporter, Craig is thrilled to be playing on the same team as on of his biggest idols. “It‟s probably one of my biggest dreams to play alongside such great players. Alan Shearer used to play for Southampton and I can remember trying to get his autograph, so playing on the same field as that guy is amazing. To walk out onto Wembley Stadium is incredible. There is nothing quite like that for someone like me who is a football fanatic.” “Matthew Le Tissier is my ultimate football legend. When I look back at some of the goals he has scored they were amazing. A fantastic Southampton player, I absolutely believe that he was underrated playing for England.”

Chris Fountain
Team: England
“I once scored from the halfway line before David Beckham did!”

Hollyoaks and Dancing On Ice heart throb Chris Fountain is hoping that his recent dream about Soccer Aid and a certain fiery chef was not a premonition! “I had a dream last night that me and Gordon Ramsay actually had a fight on the pitch! That‟s how excited I am about the game, I‟m even dreaming about it! In my dream Gordon kicked me and the ref was in the middle trying to break it up. I‟m hoping this is not a premonition! “So far, my greatest footballing achievement is that I once scored from the halfway line before David Beckham did, but I was about 9 years old! I wasn't paying attention but kicked the ball really hard and it headed straight into the goal! Also when I was younger I was one dropped from my school team for the first two games. I‟m not ashamed to admit that I was crying a lot! But they let me on for the third game and scored four goals, they then kept me on and we won the final!” Whilst confident in his footballing ability Chris is concerned about England‟s chances of scoring against Rest of the World goalie Peter Schmeichel but thinks their competitors may stand a better chance! “I've worried about Peter Schmeichel, I‟m actually scared of him. When I was little he was the best goalie in the world, if anyone scores past him I would be so impressed. I've been praying that I get a goal past him that would be my greatest life achievement so far. “The whole England team is fantastic, it‟s just a shame that David Seaman isn't on the Rest of the World team because I know I can score past him! I proved it during the Dancing on Ice Tour when we played at one of the venues and the goal was a garage door! I‟m joking, he‟s great and it‟s a good thing he's on my team really!” Excited about playing in this year‟s tournament Chris is hoping his birthday celebrations the day before the match won‟t effect on his ability during the game. “I am considering not drinking that much at my birthday the night before! I've got a huge party planned and it‟s too late to cancel. I've got David Seaman, Gareth Gates, and Kryan Bracken all coming along so hopefully England will be ok on match day! “The main achievement for me will be the whole experience of the day. Arriving on a coach, playing a full England game, you couldn't pay for this kind of experience, its every boys dream to be a professional footballer for the day!” Playing alongside the legends is something Chris admits he‟s looking forward to, but is hoping to make more of an impression with hero Alan Shearer this time around. “I am star stuck that I am going to be playing with Alan Shearer, he is such an amazing player and I remember how brilliant he was during Euro 96. I met him once when I was really drunk at The Match, I was watching and then went up to him, tapped him on the shoulder and said "Euro 96". He just kind of nodded and smiled politely, I‟m hoping he won't remember that!” Training hard to be match fit, Chris is hoping for a supportive crowd when he takes to the pitch on match day. “I‟m not match fit yet but I've been going to the gym every day doing sprinting. I've even bought a football and have been doing kick ups in the back garden to get my footballing skills up to scratch! “I‟m looking forward to the match, but having recently completed the Dancing on Ice tour my one tip would be to try not to let the crowd get to you. I‟m hoping the fans are all going to be behind England and not a hostile crowd. Soccer Aid is so different to anything I have done before we'll have to see what happens.”

Danny Jones (McFly)
Team: England
“The other players need to pass the ball to me, I’ll cross it to Shearer, then we’re laughing.” Before finding fame with McFly Danny played Sunday League with the Bolton Lads Club and Saturday League with Turton FC, making him an experienced asset to the England team. But Danny‟s not arrogant about the stakes. “I‟m worried about (Peter) Schmeichel of course, and Brian Lara. If he‟s as good on the footie pitch as he is at cricket then we could be in real trouble!” One thing Danny can be confident about is his fitness, used to thrashing it out with the band and being one of the youngest players on the team should stand him in good stead. “I‟m trying to keep fit. I‟m cycling, running and rowing every week. I played five a side the other night and did well, so I‟m shaping up nicely. I think I started training a bit late though as there‟s only a few weeks left!” Not one to shy away from competition, Danny has an extra something to prove at Soccer Aid 2008: “I‟m sure it will be really competitive. I just hope I can stay on my feet this time. I fell over in the last match so I‟ve got to prove myself this time!” Although a Bolton fan, there seems to be a Manchester theme in Danny‟s footballing heroes. “I think (Eric) Cantona is amazing and (David) Beckham and (Peter) Schmeichel of course. I‟m also a big (Teddy) Sherringham fan. I love lots of players; (Steven) Gerrard is fantastic as well.” Looks like Danny‟s one-to-watch, he‟s confident of England‟s chances to win the match…with his help of course. “The Rest of the World team have no chance, not when I‟m playing for England!” Even though he‟s used to huge crowds, Danny‟s still in awe of the Wembley atmosphere. “It‟s going to be an absolute dream come true. I went dizzy running on to Anfield let alone Wembley. I can‟t believe I‟m doing it. I‟ll probably get quite emotional to be honest. It going to be epic! “The professionals are a different class. They are quicker, more agile, but hey us celebs will give it go. It‟s effortless for the pros let‟s be honest.” Danny knows a thing or two about pre-match routines and has a crucial tip for England‟s aspiring winners. “Don‟t go out the night before and get drunk. I did that last year and really paid the price (falling over on the pitch!). I‟m going to have a quiet night this time round.”

Jamie Theakston
Team: England
“If they couldn't beat us with Zola, Maradona and Gullit on their side, they aren't going to beat us this time.” Returning to Soccer Aid 2008, Jamie Theakston has some fighting words for his rivals on the Rest of the World Team. “If they couldn't beat us with Zola, Maradona and Gullit on their side, they aren't going to beat us this time.” “The main plan is to score more goals than them - failing that, we‟re going to rely on home advantage and the confidence of an unbeaten record to see us through.” Joking that he‟s looking forward to playing with the legend that is Jonathan Wilkes, Jamie can‟t wait to get onto the turf at Wembley. “The one legend I want to play with is Jonathan Wilkes! But seriously, it doesn‟t get any better than this. Name me one boy who hasn‟t dreamt of one day playing for England at Wembley – its brilliant.” “My training involves me working out in the gym until I collapse every day - fortunately this doesn‟t take long... Last time around, Jamie‟s highlight wasn‟t even on the pitch. “Travelling from the team hotel to Old Trafford on the England team coach was very exciting for me. It all got really competitive last time and I don‟t see this year being any different. The Rest of the World will be wanting to get their revenge and we will want to defend our unbeaten record.” For me, playing against Maradona was very special last time round, and I will be hoping to put to rest the ghost of THAT penalty this time round... My ultimate football legend would be Peter Ward. He was one of the few Brighton players to be picked to represent England, and a schoolboy hero of mine.

Jamie Rednapp
Team: England
“I think the adrenaline will take over and I’ll just be buzzing once I get on the pitch” Football legend Jamie Rednapp is once again going up against the Rest of the World in Soccer Aid 2008. He remembers his highlights from Soccer Aid 2006. “As a footballer, people sometimes forget that it‟s so exciting for us to meet actors and pop stars as well as being able to play with players that I really admired growing up.” “To me as a boy growing up, Maradona was one of the best players to ever put on a pair of football boots. It was an amazing experience to play against him and to have Ruud Gullit involved as well.” Jamie‟s father Harry Rednapp will be managing the England squad and Jamie says tactics for the game will all be down to him. “Well the tactics will be down to my dad, but knowing him he‟ll just want the England team to all get a chance to play, really enjoy it and experience playing at Wembley.” Even though Jamie is a professional footballer he knows there are certain players he has to watch on the opposition and there is one person he‟s not so happy to have on the team! “I‟ve heard Nicky Byrne is a really good footballer so we‟ll have to watch out for him! I met Alastair last time and he‟s a really good laugh. I think all the girls will be really happy Jesse Metcalf‟s playing as well! As for our team – I‟m not very happy about our Manager!” “I‟m kidding!! I‟ve honestly learnt more from him than any other manager and I‟m not just saying that because he‟s my dad. I hope that all the other guys will get to enjoy the experience of being a footballer and getting to play at Wembley” “I‟ve got a bad knee so I don‟t actually play very often, only if it‟s worth it and this absolutely is. There‟s a great buzz about Soccer Aid and I‟m so excited to be playing at the new Wembley Stadium.”

Ben Shephard
Team: England
“The nation has seen enough of my body they don’t need to see any more!” GMTV favourite Ben Shephard is taking Soccer Aid very seriously, so much so he has enlisted the help of a local football and rugby team, his boxing friends and his two kids to help him get fit for the game. “Having toddlers is enough to get you fit, a game of hide and seek with my three year old is like doing a bleep test it doesn‟t stop and is very tiring!” But the keen footballer has some bad news for all his female fans watching this year‟s game his infamous torso will be staying firming under his England football shirt! Still humbled by the 2006 Soccer Aid tournament, Ben admits being managed by Terry Venables and playing alongside football greats such as Maradona, Gazza and Gianfranco Zola was an „extraordinary experience‟ and „every school boys‟ dream‟. “When I first walked into the changing room and saw an England shirt with my name on the back it sent tingles down my spine. But walking out on the pitch at Old Trafford on match day and seeing 72, 000 people made you realise how huge this event has become, it was really quite emotional. Walking out onto that pitch is actually really overwhelming. One thing you have to get your head around is the noise. You can’t explain how noisy it is on the pitch with the crowd, it’s so loud that you can’t hear your team mates stood 10 yards away. Having been on the winning side in the previous Soccer Aid finale, Ben is confident England will once again be victorious especially at the new venue, Wembley Stadium. And Ben has some fighting talk for Rest of The World captain Gordon Ramsay. “They (Rest of the World) are hurting; we took them apart and beat them! 2-1 flattened them to be honest so they want to win, especially as they‟re in our back yard at Wembley. (Gordon) Ramsey is the most competitive person I‟ve ever met in my life, but he‟s not young and I saw those pictures in the paper and he‟s not looking particularly match fit either - anyone who wear‟s Speedo‟s should be severely reprimanded!” And his determination for winning may also include tapering with Gordon‟s pre-match meal. “We‟re playing as England at the home of English football, its heart, passion, fitness but then if all that fails we might have to include some dodgy pasta in their pre match meal!” “Playing at Wembley will be awesome; I‟ll be walking out on the England pitch, in an England shirt with my name on the back next to David Seaman, Alan Shearer, Teddy Sheringham, Tony Adams and Jamie Rednapp. These are England heroes and it‟s every school boys dream. It‟ll be very emotional and very special and hopefully I won‟t make a prat of myself!” And with a number of new celebrities taking part in this year‟s game, Ben offers them some sound advice. “It‟s an interesting thing having played in Soccer Aid and trying to cope in that environment. All the celebrities are out of their comfort zone as we‟re doing something we are not known for in front of a lot of people! But some of the new players like Kyran Bracken and Gareth Gates should be able to manage fine, they‟ve ice skated in spandex and sequins and if they can cope with that, they can cope with anything - they are braver than I am!” There are a couple of footballers Ben would love to see on the pitch. “If I could be like any footballer it would be Julian Dicks, he wears his heart on his sleeve, you know he‟s not going to leave anything in the dressing room, everything goes with him you know there‟s nothing more he could have done. Id love to play alongside Stuart Pearce, his passion and aggression matched with his extraordinary left foot is something I just think is just truly English.”

Alan Shearer
“If we’ve scored more than them after 90 minutes I’ll be happy!” Football legend Alan Shearer joins team England for Soccer Aid 2008 and has some straight forward tactics to win. “I keep things pretty simple when it comes to tactics. If we‟ve scored more than them after 90 minutes I‟ll be happy! The best tactics are; those that score the most win.” “There‟s a real mix of talent amongst the teams and there will certainly be a lot of passion out there on the pitch. I just hope I manage to stick the ball in the back of the net!” Confessing that he‟s not match fit, he‟ll be preparing with a little bit of extra help at home. “I‟m golf match fit,” he laughs. “My son Will is going to help me prepare with a kick about in the back garden. He‟s a keen young player so he‟ll want me to do well. I‟m sure I‟ll get out on my specialised road bike and get the lungs and legs going again for stamina.” Having played there many times before, it‟s still an honour to step back out onto that hallowed turf at Wembley and Shearer can‟t wait. “It‟s always a great place to play. I‟ve actually played already on the new pitch for Umbro so it won‟t be my first time, but it‟s one of the best stadiums in the world” A seasoned professional, he knows that the celebrities will have their work cut out for them against the legends and has some advice for them to keep in mind. “In the past they have done OK. It obviously helps when they‟ve played a little bit before, whether that‟s Sunday league or 5-a-side. The main thing is to keep things simple. If they get in a decent position in front of goal they should always pass to me!” “In fact, only pass to me. And keep running – ideally for themselves and me!” Alan knows how important taking part in this tournament is and what it means for UNICEF and their partners. “They do some unbelievable work with children especially those affected by HIV/AIDS and also protecting kids that badly need protection. I‟ve been lucky enough to personally see the good that their work does when I went over to Uganda earlier this year. It‟s a massive job that they do, and so important.”

David Seaman
Team: England
“Everyone will want to win; the sportsmen have that natural instinct and the celebs won’t want to embarrass themselves!” Ex goalkeeper David Seaman is back again to join the England team hoping to win for the second time running, but knows it will not be easy. “I don‟t see why England can‟t win again although I think the Rest of the World pose more of a threat this year to be honest.” “I was really impressed with Patrick Kielty‟s goal keeping skills last time and I‟m sure that Peter Schmeichel will be on hand to give him some advice. In fact, it‟s really nice that it‟s the same four goalies as last time, we‟ve got a goalies union and all stick together!” David has some great memories from the 2006 Soccer Aid tournament but his personal highlight wasn‟t even on the pitch. “My best memory was standing in the tunnel before the game with Robbie. I was cool as a cucumber; I had the three lions on my chest, it was like playing for England but without the pressure! But Robbie was completely out of his comfort zone, he‟s fine to play a concert and sing for thousands of people but he was terrified in the tunnel!” “Playing again Maradona was a new experience. He‟s a proper legend, a fantastic player. Of course, everyone remembers the „hand of God‟- if he‟d tried that against me I‟d have chased him round the pitch! I was very impressed he played the whole match but I was so jealous that Jamie Theakston got to take a penalty against him. I wish it could have been me instead!” David has played many a game at Wembley Stadium but is very excited about returning. “I‟m so excited - it‟s my only chance to play at the new Wembley. When I was at Wembley Arena with the Dancing on Ice tour I went to have a look round and I took my son to the FA Cup final there and it‟s really impressive. The old stadium held so many memories for me of winning cup finals and climbing those famous steps to get to the trophy” David knows before any match you need to be prepared and in good shape but has a novel preparation method. “I‟ll be salmon fishing in Scotland the week before the game which should get me relaxed.” “I‟m doing some goalkeeping coaching before the game so hopefully that should help as well. I know it will be just as competitive this time around! Everyone will want to win; the sportsmen have that natural instinct and the celebrities won‟t want to embarrass themselves!” David is also looking forward to testing himself against fellow legendary goalie Peter Schmeichel. “It‟s great to be able to play against each other without any real pressure. Back in the 90s there seemed to be a 50/50 split between us as to who people thought was the best goalie so we can see which of us is still up to the job!”

Jonathan Wilkes
Team: England
“I was playing against Maradona, he is the best player in the world and I won the man of the match so technically that makes me the best player in the world.” Presenter and Soccer Aid co-creator, Jonathan Wilkes is still on a high from the last tournament in 2006. Having scored the winning goal for England and being crowned man of the match, he often relives his footballing glory with his mates. “I think scoring past (Peter) Schmeichel and winning man of the match is pretty much the biggest highlight in my life never mind Soccer Aid! It the stuff that you dream about and all my mates remind me because I was playing against (Diego) Maradona, he is the best player in the world and I won the man of the match so technically that makes me the best player in the world. “It‟s quite amazing how you can do loads of stuff in your career but this was the one thing that impressed the lads and they come up to me and say „that must have been amazing‟. I think every school kid, boy and man who watches football dreams of their moment and I got the chance to do it, I am a very lucky lad really.” Having devised the format with mate Robbie Williams, Jonathan admits the inspiration came after watching Euan McGregor and friend Charley Boorman‟s biking treks around the world. (2006 Soccer Aid) “It was amazing. It was literally done over a conversation with me and Rob (Williams). What inspired us was watching Ewan McGregor and his best mate going across the world on motor bikes and we said to ourselves, we have got to do something where we can raise a load of money for charity but have a lot of fun at the same time. So we devised this idea and when it became reality it was an amazing achievement.” A huge football fan, Jonathan admits that his other highlight of the previous game was playing alongside his childhood hero Paul Gascoigne, who also thanked Jonathan for one of the best week‟s of his life. “My ultimate football legend was Paul Gascoigne and I got the chance to train every day with him. He is pure genius on the pitch and off the pitch with the lads and I‟m sad when I pick up the papers and read about him. All my prayers are with him because if anybody loved and didn‟t want that week to finish it was Paul Gascoigne, just being back with all the lads, it was everything to him. I remember when we played the game he was unbelievable in the first half and when it all finished he came up to me and said „thank you for the best week of my life‟, and I just went wow. If Paul Gascoigne says that to me who I idealised as a kid you are doing something right in life.” With a host of international players ready to compete alongside celebrity enthusiasts, Jonathan admits that last time Gianfranco Zola and Rest of the World captain Gordon Ramsay were players he was particularly cautious of. “We were always very cautious of Gianfranco Zola and I think from a celebrity point of view it would be Gordon Ramsay. We were always a bit cautious of Gordon he could play football but I think the injury didn‟t do him too many favours two years ago. “The good thing about the England boys was when we took to the pitch last time it was our friendship that really helped us win the game. We had such a great week off the pitch that we took it onto the pitch and that is what pulled us through. I think we were very well organised the only thing that beat us was a penalty so I think if we keep that spirit we deserve to win again.” This year the competition is definitely heating up as Gordon Ramsay attempts to take to the trophy from England, but Jonathan is confident that England will once again rein as champions especially at their new ground, Wembley Stadium.

“I think their legends are going to be good this year. Ramsay will definitely want to win this time and lift the trophy. Will Rest of the World win? In a word no! But do you know what I just hope it‟s a good game and I hope everybody comes along and takes it in the right manner and realise that there is one goal, and the goal is to raise as much money as we can for UNICEF.” Confessing to a lack of fitness compared with 2 years ago, Jonathan offers advice to some of the new face, including Gareth Gates who are joining the teams this time round. “I‟ve always played sport with good standard but it‟s fitness that you have got to be careful of and to be honest I am not as fit as I was two years ago. I wish I was but through work commitment it‟s been tough really. “We‟ve got some new faces joining us this year such as Gareth Gates, it can be quite daunting, I remember going into the dressing room for the first time and looking at Paul Gascoigne‟s and Jamie Rednapp‟s shirt‟s and just thinking this is unbelievable. The main thing is to enjoy it because the week goes so quick and you have got to try and take it all in.”

Kenny Dalglish
Manager, Rest of the World
“I think as soon as we all get together for training we’ll develop a team mentality and have the determination to win” The legendary Scot Kenny Dalglish is spearheading team Rest of the World this year and believes with a bit of grit and determination he can lead them to victory. “The game was close in 2006 so I don‟t see why we can‟t win this year! I think the main thing with Soccer Aid is keeping people entertained! As much as I want to win, I think if we‟ve entertained the people who‟ve come along to watch we‟ll have done our job” “Their (England‟s) ex-players are all quite young. Jamie Redknapp and Teddy Sheringham have only just finished playing so they might still be quite fit! Having said that, we‟ve got some good celebrity players on my team; I‟ve seen Nicky Byrne play a few times and he‟s very fit.” Kenny knows mixing a team of celebrities and professionals has its challenges but he has a few tips on who might make man of the match, and surprisingly he ranks some of his celebrity players. “Gordon Ramsay and Nicky Byrne look fit which is great for the Rest of the World. I think everyone, the pros and celebrities will just be aiming to keep their reputation and not embarrass themselves!” “I will be getting Gordon to cook a pre-match meal for the team!”

Nicky Byrne (Westlife)
Team: Rest of the World
“For me being an Irish lad and Kenny being the manager of our team, our Celtic spirit will come out fighting against the old enemies.” Westlife star Nicky Byrne is the man to watch on the Rest of the World team. Tipped by both his team mates, and manager Kenny Dalglish, this former pro player can‟t wait to get back onto the pitch. “It‟s going to be intimidating but the most important thing for me is going to be to enjoy it. Some of the best players have games that pass them by. For me, I‟m used to dealing with nerves and being out in front of thousands of people. But being out there at Wembley will be a new experience. I‟ve never been in the new Wembley stadium. I watched Leeds play there once but it will be great to be there and take it all in.” Nicky‟s first love is football and he was signed for Leeds as just a teenager, and put straight in goal! “As a kid I used to play for a good club in Dublin and then signed for Leeds at 16 and a half and spent two years there. As a young Irish guy, it was every kids dream. To sign for one of those clubs was huge. I was a goalkeeper at the time, and at 5 ft 10, I was known as the “little keeper.” They are all so big in the premiership that I struggled a bit really from the offset.” “My Dad was a goalkeeper so I followed in his footsteps. But every goalie will say that they love actually playing out on the field and trying to score goals.” “For Soccer Aid, I‟m out there on the pitch so will be giving it a go. I‟ve always wanted to play and was gutted that I couldn‟t play in Soccer Aid the last time around.” Looking at the opposition, Nicky knows that they have a tough team to beat.

“On the English side, Shearer and Seaman are definite ones to watch. Redknapp has only
retired a few years ago so he will be tough to go up against. It will be a good game. For me being an Irish lad and Kenny being the manager of our team, our Celtic spirit will come out fighting against the old enemies.” Since he signed up to play, Nicky has upped his training regime to ensure he is match fit on the day. “You can‟t be properly match fit unless you are playing for a team – I do train in the gm. Since I confirmed I‟ve been training harder and all each of us can do is try and practice at that stamina training. It‟s great for us who aren‟t professionals to get the chance to go out there and essentially be a proper player for a week.” “I‟m not one to give advice but it‟s about concentrating and playing your own game. In any walk of life you don‟t want to be nervous. Once we get together and have some days training we will have the banter and that settles the nerves. A good few early touches on the ball will be good and will help, especially in front of a good crowd. You don‟t want the game to end and think you haven‟t enjoyed it so just to relax and to try and do that is the most important thing.”

Santiago Cabrera
Team: Rest of the World
“I’m definitely not going to go hard on any tackles against Alan Shearer. I think I might break a leg.” Best known for his role in TV drama Heroes, where he plays the painter Issac Mendes, actor Santiago Cabrera can‟t wait to get out onto the pitch for Soccer Aid, as he started his career as a professional footballer. “I‟ve played high level football in Chile which is where I am from, since a really young age. I actually had a scholarship in football as well. When I came over to London about eight years ago I played for Hampton and Richmond and then had to take the decision as to whether to continue in football or go to drama school. I went to drama school and the rest is history.” Still a keen player now, he heads over to Robbie‟s house when he is LA where they have a kick about. “Robbie has a pitch in his back garden so whenever I am in LA I go over and we have a game of football. He‟s a really nice, generous guy and it‟s great to go over and have a kick about.” “I‟m really looking forward to playing at Wembley. It‟ll be an unnerving but amazing experience to walk out in front of that crowd, and to have the chance to play alongside some of the greatest world footballers is a chance not to be missed.” Santiago is slightly wary of his opposition however, and one of the players more than the others. “I‟m definitely not going to go hard on any tackles against Alan Shearer. I think I might break a leg.” Santiago is taking a break from rehearsals for Romeo and Juliet at Middle Temple Hall to play in the match. “Normally people would say break a leg for luck but I think in this case, and against Alan Shearer, I‟d rather not!”

Alastair Campbell
Team: Rest of the World
“We can definitely win, just look at some of those names” Alastair Campbell returns again to play for The Rest of The World team in this year‟s Soccer Aid tournament and has novel highlight from the previous game. “My highlight from 2006 was playing the bagpipes in the dressing room before the start of the match. Watching Maradona, Zola and Ginola dancing around to that was surreal!” He had some rivals last time around but his biggest rival Jamie Redknapp is playing again, and it seems they have a score to settle. “Jamie Redknapp was my biggest rival last time. He was always going on at me for playing for the Rest of the World‟s team when I was born in England. But blood is thicker than water he should know that.” Alastair is determined not to embarrass his sons with his performance on the pitch but confesses that a couple of injuries sustained earlier this year might hold him back. “I am match fit up to a point. I'm 51 and beginning to feel it and I have had a stack of injuries this year. The worst has been a bad injury to my shoulder which meant I was unable to do any triathlon events this summer because I could not do the swimming part. But I have been doing a lot of cycling, and using the holidays to play football with my sons, who are hopeful I won't embarrass them as much as apparently I did at Old Trafford!” Looking at the line up for team England Alastair is worried about a couple of players but knows what needs to be done. “Last time I body checked Les Ferdinand! It was a bit rash really but he was very nice about it. However, I‟m not sure Alan Shearer would take it in the same spirit. Ben Shepherd fancies himself in the touch tackle stakes too. Jonathan Wilkes is a very good player and definitely needs one of the real footballers on him.” Alastair believes the teams will keep the competitive streak which was seen last time around and considers that Rest of the World have a very good chance of winning. “It did get quite competitive last year and it was one of the reasons we all enjoyed it so much. Ruud Gullit was very laid back as Manager though and I think Kenny Dalglish will really fancy the idea of beating an England team at Wembley so I think the Rest of the World team will be even more up for it. We can definitely win - just look at some of those names.” Alastair knows exactly what to do to make sure he is on the winning side. “During the training week, the professionals were fantastic at helping and giving tips, but come the day, on both sides they really took control. At times it was like a five a side match with six spectators on each side. It is only when you play with some of these players that you realise just how good they are. I recall one moment when Gazza was running towards me and it was like watching a ballet dancer with a ball at his feet. It was the same when Zola went on for us. My general rule is if the ball comes my way I will look for the nearest proper player, and enjoy the day as much as I can, but I really want to win this time.” As Alastair was in the team last time he has some tips for the rookie celebs. “Enjoy it because it will fly by. Also, do not be fazed by the noise. I had been to hundreds of big sporting events as a spectator but nothing prepared me for the noise of 72000 people when playing. During training and the warm up match I had Marcel Desailly and others alongside me telling me what to do virtually every second. At Old Trafford I could not hear a

thing and I was all at sea for the first ten minutes or so. According to my sons I never recovered” “Wembley is a beautiful stadium, and if the buzz walking out is anything like it was at Old Trafford, it will be an unforgettable experience.”

Gethin Jones
Team: Rest of the World
“Even as a Welshman I can appreciate how amazing it will be to run out on the pitch at Wembley” Presenter Gethin Jones is hoping to show even more skill on the pitch at this year‟s Soccer Aid tournament than he did in last year‟s Strictly Come Dancing. “Maybe the footwork I learned on Strictly Come Dancing will come in handy, but I think my fellow team mate Kenny Logan is hoping they will more. He (Kenny Logan) certainly hasn‟t got the pace to get around anyone! He has to think of other ways to get round players, maybe picking the oldest players to go up against, but I‟ll be looking to do that as well!” A self confessed football fan, Gethin confesses to being envious of the players who appeared in the first Soccer Aid tournament in 2006. “I remember watching the game in 2006 and being very jealous. Rugby‟s my first passion but when I went to university in Manchester it was all about the football and so I developed a love for the game. With the line-up that‟s been announced it‟s going to be an amazing experience. “Even as a Welshman I can appreciate how amazing it will be to run out at Wembley; I‟ll be the envy of all my friends. It‟s awesome. We‟re spoilt in Wales with the Millennium Stadium but Wembley is epic!” Having recently played in Bolivia against team of local all star players, Gethin is hoping his luck will continue when playing against this year‟s England squad. “I went to Bolivia in the summer and played a match against a Bolivian all star side that acts as a feeder club for the MLS (Major League Soccer). I scored the winning goal and gloated all the way home with the trophy in my lap! The training was hideous though, we were running in sand dunes and in the water, but I might have to do something similar to be able to run round a few of the players this time!” “I‟m an alright player. I‟ve got an engine which is my main strength, but can also give it short. I‟d like to think I‟m a Ray Wilkins kind of player, but I‟m probably more like David Batty. I‟m not as a fit as I should be, but I can do a job kicking the ball and giving it to people like Romario to weave their magic!” With some of the best footballing legends taking part in the year‟s game, Gethin admits to being in awe of these footballing giants. “I used to watch a programme that followed Italian and Spanish football and you‟d see Romario at Barcelona, (Franco) Baresi at AC Milan. (Peter) Schmeichel was a legend in Manchester while I was at university there, so it‟s going to be incredible. You have to pinch yourself, but I just hope I play more than two minutes. Having been involved with UNICEF whilst presenting Blue Peter and seeing their successful work first hand, Gethin is hoping that this year‟s tournament raises more money for the charity. UNICEF was Blue Peter‟s charity of the year and I went to Malawi after the show helped raise money for 22 children centres. I went over with a couple of Blue Peter viewers and it was good to see the work they do first hand. To get involved with this was a no brainer; it‟s not only a fantastic opportunity, but you also understand, appreciate and welcome the fact that you can help by taking part.

Patrick Kielty
Team: Rest of the World
“The crowd might be fooled into thinking “Christ he looks in good shape.” But that’s just the six minutes sun I get annually.” In typical laid back style Patrick Kietly‟s preparations for this year‟s Soccer Aid hasn‟t exactly been strenuous. Patrick‟s tactic: a bit of good old fashioned rest and relaxation. “I‟m barely fit enough to climb up the stand to sit and watch the game! I‟m far from match fit. I‟ve tried to do a couple of press-ups and a little bit of jogging on the spot, but the game‟s at the start of September, and like everyone else I‟ll be lying on a beach in August.” The comedian got involved with Soccer Aid after having his sporting prowess recognised by Soccer Aid producer David Staite. “He (David Staite) realised how bad a player I was. So he thought to himself „I need someone really rubbish to play for The Rest of The World so England can win‟ and that‟s why I got the call! Funnily enough England won last time so I must have done something right.” Patrick‟s real contribution is in a more off-the-pitch capacity, although confident in his qualities as reserve goalkeeper Kietly believes his real role lies in team entertainment. “My role is this; because I live on the King‟s Road (where the team‟s hotel is) they have me on the team in order to get into nightclubs. My job isn‟t in the footballing capacity; my job is to sort out the guest list for Boujis. Trust me, that‟s my only contribution. It‟s not a bad one, last time round David Ginola and I didn‟t make it to bed until quarter to six two nights before the game! We‟re hoping to take it almost as seriously this time around.” Far from being intimidated by some of the more fiery players on the pitch, Kietly is relishing the prospect of a competitive atmosphere. “I‟m hoping for a filthy game. I‟m hoping for a game where the celebrities loose they‟re tempers, I‟d love to see world class footballers loose their tempers as well! There was one point last year where, Diego Maradona was basically kicked up and down the pitch like a football. A certain GMTV presenter, who I won‟t name….Ben Shephard….was responsible for that!” Kietly also offers newcomers Gareth Gates and Kyran Bracken a few friendly words of advice. “They should get their ice skates on! We‟re going to kick their frosty arses. They could turn up with Bonnie Langford on trapeze wires and they would still get their arses kicked.” As for his own team mates, Patrick believes playing alongside Gordon Ramsay may bring a tactical advantage. “If your Irish telling someone to f**k off is the same as asking “how you doing?” There maybe some shrinking violets that are scared of Gordon‟s language, but when Gordon tells me to f**k off I can just tell him to f**k off back, so it‟s great. We‟re developing it into a cunning plan to fool the English side; it‟ll literally be, “and now we go over to the Rest of the World team for their pre-match talk ….beep, beep, beep, beep… they‟re not going to be able to work out our tactics!” Ever the good sport Patrick is an avid supporter of fair play: “Teddy Sherringham is playing for the England team, I‟m in Portugal at the moment, and I‟m playing golf with him later today. If Teddy‟s involved in a tragic golf ball accident… that‟s all I‟m saying. Our job as celebrities is to just kick! Ben (Shepherd) had it right; our job is to just kick ex-professional footballers!”

On a slightly more serious note, Soccer Aid clearly means a lot to the Irishman. “Last time round I stood in the tunnel at Old Trafford behind Diego Maradona, and it was one of the most memorable experiences of my life! Standing there, waiting in the tunnel about to walk out, and to have Marcel Desailly, to have Dunga, to have Lothar Matthaus, to have Maradona, to have four world cup winners lined up about to walk out next to you, and you‟re in that team, and you think to yourself „My God this is the greatest night of my life”.

Brian Lara Team: Rest of World
“Dwight Yorke told me that there’s no way I will ever get past Jaap Stam, so I’m very thankful he’s on my team!” Cricketing hero Brian Lara is going back to his footballing roots for Soccer Aid 2008. As a teenager he played for Trinidad and Tobago at U14 and U16 level alongside Dwight Yorke and Shaka Hislop but doesn‟t think he made the wrong decision in pursuing cricket instead of a career as a footballer. “I was progressing much faster at cricket and I wasn‟t the biggest kid either, so I‟m not sure I was cut out to be a footballer.” However, he‟s still a huge football fan and says one of his proudest moments was watching his former team mates play for their country in the 2006 World Cup. “I took so much satisfaction from seeing Dwight, Shaka and Russell play in the 2006 World Cup. It was a major thing for the country, and I was so proud of them because that milestone came quite late in their careers. To see three guys who I grew up with persevere for so long and finally realise their dreams was tremendous” Brian confesses his fitness might not be at the same level as it was when he was playing cricket but still hopes to make a good impression on ROW boss Kenny Dalgleish. “I‟m someone who gave up on the game many years ago, so I could end up just jogging around the field contributing very little. I‟d love to rediscover my touch and make some sort of impression. I just want to get into the starting XI. That will mean I‟ve done something in training to impress Mr Dalglish and from there I just want to keep that up during the match.” The cricketing star says the chance to play at Wembley was one that he couldn‟t refuse. “Wembley is a brilliant venue and when I was asked to take part in Soccer Aid there was no second guessing. I said yes immediately. It‟s a great charity initiative, but of course there‟s the added bonus of playing at the home of football. At the time, I didn‟t know who else was going to be involved, but I didn‟t care – I just wanted to grasp the opportunity because it‟s not every day you get asked to play at Wembley.” Brian reveals he‟s already been doing his homework on his team mates. “I was speaking to Dwight Yorke and he told me that there‟s no way I will ever get past Jaap Stam, so I‟m very thankful he‟s on my team!”

Although excited about the match, and used to large crowds at cricket games Brian confesses that he might suffer a few pre-match nerves. “With a cricket bat in my hand I feel comfortable because I‟ve prepared myself for many, many years to handle that situation. But this is something completely new to me. I don‟t know how a football match is going to go – the thought of having to make quick decisions when a ball is coming towards me makes me a little apprehensive.”

Touchline Reporter
The presenter Tim Lovejoy from Sky Sports Soccer AM is joining Soccer Aid 2008 to help out as a reporter. He is looking forward to seeing Gordon Ramsay playing as he hasn‟t seen him play before along with a couple of players he would like to see on the pitch. “I‟m looking forward to seeing if Gordon Ramsay lives up to the hype. We‟ve all heard about how he used to play for Rangers and at last we‟ll get to see just how good he is!” “I think Eric Cantona and Gianfranco Zola are the two finest foreign players who ever played in the Premiership, so it would be great to see them playing for the Rest of the World” Tim knows the celebrities will not be as a good as the professionals but he has some tips for them all to help them play a good game. “Obviously, the celebrities won‟t be quite as good as the professionals, but I think as long as the pros don‟t get too frustrated at the celebs‟ passes not necessarily going in the right direction, they‟ll be fine!” “The advice I would give them is make sure the red mist doesn‟t come down! There‟s nothing more embarrassing than a player losing their temper in front of a packed stadium and television audience, especially when the game‟s for charity” Tim once offered £5 to anyone who went to an English football match with a sign saying 'Lovejoy is a legend' and he his happy for these kind of tactics at a game with such calibre as this. “I‟m perfectly happy for people to bring signs to the game saying that I‟m a legend! I think I‟ll donate any money to UNICEF rather than to the fans this time though!” Tim whilst hosting Soccer AM got 'bouncebackablility' into the English dictionary but when asking him about any new English dictionary terms coined from Soccer Aid he said it should reflect the way footballers speak. “We should move on to punctuation instead and get full stops replaced with „erm‟ to reflect the way most footballers speak” Harry Redknapp and Kenny Daglish or the managers for each side but Tim thinks they will get on fine. “They‟ll get on great with each other; I‟m more worried about how the Rest of the World team will cope with Kenny as their manager. He‟ll need a translator for most of the team to understand him!” Tim watched Soccer Aid last time and he is really looking forward to being involved this year. “Yes I did watch it last year, and Old Trafford had a great atmosphere but it‟ll be even better at Wembley” The main reason for everybody taking part in the game is to help the charity UNICEF to raise money. “I think it‟s brilliant that so many players and celebrities are helping to raise money for UNICEF. It‟s wonderful that football can be used for such a good cause”

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