Krakow World Youth Day – World Youth Pearl Cup
With World Youth Week currently taking place in Krakow there was a chance for a mixture of pilgrims and local people to get involved and show off their football skills on Wednesday night in the World Youth Pearl Cup – a charity football match arranged in order to raise money for local children’s charity HCPT Polska.
So what is World Youth Week?
World Youth Week is an event run every three (sometimes two) years by the Catholic Church, in which Catholics from all around the world travel to the host city to take part in a number of different events, culminating at the end of the week with a mass from the Pope. As well as being a religious occasion it is also a chance for people from countries world-wide to join together and create a unity of acceptance. It is estimated that over 1,000,000 people have come to Krakow to celebrate this year’s event.
HCTP Polska Charity Match
With so many young people in the city it was the perfect chance for local children’s charity HCTP Polska to bring some of these together for a charity football match. The charity itself raises money for local disabled children to take a pilgrimage to Lourdes each year, with their goals being achieved by a number of fundraising events throughout the year. To find out more about this wonderful charity please follow this link.
The game itself took place at Nadwislan Stadium which is located in the shadow of Wawel Castle, with the players consisting of a mixture of pilgrims as well as local people with a number of different nationalities being represented. The kit was kindly provided by local pub TEA Time, and locally based company Sterling Credit Management, with one team donning green shirts and the other wearing the yellow TEA Time shirts. The organiser of the event and HCTP volunteer Andy Keogh was the referee.
After the pre-match handshakes and introductions, as well as a minute’s silence in memory of the awful events in France earlier that day the game got underway. The first half was a fairly even affair with the yellow team taking a 2-1 lead into half time. The game was more open in the second half and it looked like it could go all the way to extra time with the score tied at 3-3 with 15 minutes to go. However as the yellows tired the greens capitalised and scored three late goals to take it to 6-3. The yellows did pull one back late on but it wasn’t enough to present the greens taking the honours.
All in all in was a successful event and helped to raise to some money for a great charity. The game was also played in a very fair and friendly manner and was a good representation of what this week is all about.
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