A host of legendary Aycliffe footballers and other well-known stars will line up for a charity fundraising game next week.
Former stars such as Dan Mellanby, John Shotton, Stuart Owen, Ray Stanger and Warren Byrne have agreed to take part in the game to raise funds for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research.
But organiser Paul McGeary (above centre) is still appealing for more former players to get involved.
The star-studded tie, which will see former captains Sean Tarling (above right) and John Close (left) go head-to-head as managers, will also features ex-players Darren Craddock, Paul Broom, Fred Woodhouse and brothers Mark and Ben Wood.
It will also see former chairman Gary Farley return to his old stomping ground when he assumes his more familiar role of match referee, with Dave Hall and Michael Young as his able assistants.
Former programme editor and treasurer McGeary, 33, was diagnosed with Leukaemia late last year, but has made an almost full recovery, raising almost £8,000 along the way.
To date, over 30 players have come forward to participate in the day, but with Peter Dixon’s Northern League outfit contesting a cup final against rivals Shildon just three days later, several players – from both sides – have had to accept non-playing roles on the day.
With injuries and fitness concerns over several other players, coaches Tarling and Close could have limited numbers from which to pick from, when they lock horns later this week to finalise their drafts.
Paul said: “We’ve had a tremendous response from current and former players, but we could do with a couple of more names to fill the pool.
“We have relaxed the rules slightly and allowed some select guests to take part, but that will just add to the entertainment, and all ‘wild cards’ are die-hard Newtonians, as well as good friends of both myself and the charity.”
The game takes place on Saturday 2nd May at Moore Lane Park, home of Newton Aycliffe FC, and kicks off at 12.30pm.
Admission is by donation to the charity and it is hoped that many of the club’s current and lapsed fans reunite to celebrate what should be a fantastic occasion for the club, the town and the charity.
Any former players interested in getting involved can email Paul McGeary: [email protected]
Playing pool to date: *denotes those from Newton Aycliffe FC/Shildon AFC