Hibs legends unite for Shaun Woodburn charity match

Shaun Woodburn will be remembered during the match.
Shaun Woodburn will be remembered during the match.

A HOST of Hibs legends will be getting together later this week for a charity match in memory of tragic former footballer Shaun Woodburn.

The event will see 16 of Shaun’s former Leith Athletic teammates take on an array of Easter Road stars, with Anthony Stokes, Kevin Thomson and Mickey Weir among those joining in.

It comes just over five months since Shaun died just 30 after being attacked in Leith while celebrating Hogmanay.

Organised by the Leith Community Fundraising Organisation – with the support of Leith Athletic – it is hoped the match could raise thousands for Street Soccer Scotland, the charity chosen by Shaun’s family.

Gerry Freedman, chairman of the organisation, said he hoped to get a good turnout at Friday night’s game, which will get under way at 6.45pm at Leith Links.

He said: “He [Shaun] was a great player but more importantly a lovely boy who played with a smile on his face.

“We are having this event to honour Shaun and give his family a insight on how much he was loved by everyone in Leith and the wider community.

“Leith has a bad press sometimes but the event will show the real Leith, looking after our own.”

Shaun, who was a Hibs fan himself, started his juvenile football career with Leith Athletic at the age of 11, playing for the club until he was 19.

The eldest of five children, he went on to sign for Bonnyrigg Rose in 2012 before leaving some time later to spend more time with his family.

Mr Freedman, honorary life chairman and founding member of Leith Athletic, said he was sure the event would be an “emotional” night.

He added: “It’s for charity but it’s more for Shaun to honour his memory.

“He was a very good player but he was a lovely kid and turned into a lovely man. It’s just so tragic. We are going to make it a night to remember.

“I am sure it will be an emotional night.”

As well as the match itself, the fundraiser will also include a half-time penalty shoot-out starring ex-Hibs stars Anthony Stokes and Kevin Thomson and ex-Leith Athletic player Lee Currie.

The line-up will also include Danny Swanson, also an ex-Leith Athletic player who has signed a pre-contract and play with Hibs next season.

Other former Hibs stars set to play in the match include Darren Jackson, Gareth Evans, Gary Smith, Graham Harvey, Gordon Hunter, Colin Nish, Steven Raynes, Mark McGraw, Willie Jamieson, Tam Aitchison, Keith Wright and Billy Bauld. More information on the match is available on the ‘Leith Legends v Hibs Legends’ Facebook page.