By Anita Guidera
Thursday August 06 2009
Westlife superstar Shane Filan wowed fans with his fancy footwork when he scored the winning goal in a charity football match against his childhood heroes, Sligo Rovers, last night.
The multi-millionaire heart-throb fulfilled a childhood dream when he captained his father-in-law's works team from a local junior astro-turf league before a crowd of 500 at the Sligo Showgrounds.
"I actually find this quite exciting. I've followed Sligo Rovers all my life and I never thought I would get to play a game against them," he said before kick-off.
"To do it at the Showgrounds is an added thrill. It's what every kid in Sligo wants to do."
And he even managed to score the winning goal from a penalty against the Eircom League side in the action-packed game which ended with a 3-1 win for 'Filan's Eleven'.
After a goal-free first half, Shane's team went one up when his co-striker, former Rovers star Sean Flannery, scored -- but just two minutes later, Rovers equalised.
Following a 20-yard driving run down the middle by Shane, his pass to Anthony Hennebery was netted in the 80th minute to put his side 2-1 ahead.
But Shane sealed victory when he scored from the penalty spot in the closing minutes.
Earlier, the 30-year-old beamed proudly as he jogged out sporting the striker's Number 9 jersey, after jetting in from London, where Westlife are working on their next album, just hours earlier.
He arranged the game with League of Ireland side Rovers to help pals Ann Culkin, a 26-year-old HR consultant, and Hilary Jones (27), a beauty consultant, raise funds for a charity climb of Africa's highest mountain, Kilimanjaro, in aid of the Irish Red Cross later this month.
His Night Owls' League team, named the Sligo Plumbing and Heating Company, included four former Rovers players.
The youngest fan at the game was five-month-old Alana Lynch, who travelled from Dundalk with her parents, Francis and Carmel, friends of the organisers.
Alana's brother Francis (3) and sister Aoife (5) were official mascots for Shane's side as he led his squad on to the pitch.Source:
The Irish Mirror / Herald.ie