Format changed for NHS charity football match due to overwhelming interest and support

PUBLISHED: 12:13 10 April 2020

Former Sunderland, Tottenham Hotspur and England striker Darren Bent is one of the latest names to sign up for Charity FC 2020's match in honour of the NHS. Picture: DAVID HOWARTH/PA

Former Sunderland, Tottenham Hotspur and England striker Darren Bent is one of the latest names to sign up for Charity FC 2020's match in honour of the NHS. Picture: DAVID HOWARTH/PA

PA Archive/PA Images

It started out as an idea for one game of football to celebrate the sacrifice and work of the NHS but it has grown so big that the whole format of the day has changed beyond recognition.

There will now be three matches of 60 minutes, involving 12 to 15 players on each side from a squad of over 30-year-old non-league players against one made up of ex-pros.

Hemel Hempstead Town’s Vauxhall Road ground will play host to the event with the first clash planned to start at 12.30pm on a date to be advised once the lockdown is over.

The squads will be made via a live lucky dip on social media.

The organisers, including former WGC skipper Liam Kenna and Berkhamsted manager Lee Bircham, said: “We are truly humbled by the amount of players and celebrities that are wanting to help us raise money for such a good cause that we have had to change the format.

“Originally it was planned to do one game as a massive party to show our appreciation of the wonderful work of the NHS.

“But we now simply want to include as many players and celebrities as possible.”

The news came as more names were added, including former Tottenham Hotspur, Sunderland and England striker Darren Bent.


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