Thursday, June 01, 2006

Chris McGuirk

Source: Prestwich Advertiser.
Thursday, June 1.

By Tony Howard

FC UNITED joined an ex-England international, a former Manchester United stalwart and several soap stars in a charity game to raise funds for an injured rugby player.

The Gigg Lane lodgers came to the aid of 21-year-old Chris McGuirk who was left paralysed when he broke his neck playing for Salford side De La Salle last December, when his friends launched an appeal to raise ?200,000 to build a house suited to his disability needs.

Chris is currently being treated at Southport's spinal injury unit and can only leave when he has a suitable home. The reds faced an All-Star team including ex-England footballer Peter Reid, former Manchester United winger Ben Thornley, Coronation Street stars Andy Whyment (Kirk), Alan Halsall (Tyrone), Richard Fleeshman (Craig Harris), Sam Robertson (Adam Baldwin), radio DJ Mike Sweeney and Rhodri Giggs, brother of United winger Ryan.

FC boss Karl Marginson was pleased United could do their bit. He said:"Everyone who plays sports can feel for Chris after what happened. I've had my share of injuries while playing, but what happened to Chris doesn't just mean he'll miss a few games, it's affected his whole life so we were happy to get involved It was a great day and the match was a laugh. I was quite impressed with Mike Baldwin's lad [Sam Robertson] - he scored a nice chip." Peter Reid was given the run around in midfield as the reds triumphed 11-7. He said: "FC United are great for getting involved and their supporters are fantastic. The team play to a very good standard and 20 years ago I might have got near them but today I just couldn't!"

Chris was overwhelmed with the support he received. He said: "I can't say how grateful I am to everyone who's got behind me. To see the crowd turn out for the match was brilliant. I'd like to thank FC United as well all my friends, family and everyone else who's supported me especially John Camilleri who has organised everything. "It's a cliche but I am taking every day as it comes. I'm improving all the time. The support really spurs me on."