Report on Ieuan’s Kick at Cardiff City v Arsenal from last season.
Ieuan was one of three Cardiff mascots and there was also one mascot for Arsenal. We arrived at 11.45, in time for Ieuan to receive a full kit and meet the other mascots. We had to wait in a small room for the players to arrive in their coach and all the boys were given a programme for the players to sign. They stood by the door to the dressing room and, as each player came in, they signed the programme and then they all had their photo taken with the players. They managed to gain about 16 autographs and photos. Craig Bellamy’s daughter was with him and she joined the mascots, who were then supposed to go and see the manager to sign their certificates but, unfortunately, Malky McKay was busy. The boys went onto the pitch with the team and played in an area on their own with the club mascots during the team warm up. At the end of the warm up, the boys did a lap of honour of the pitch, clapping the crowd and cheering. They went in with the team before Ieuan lead them out, holding the Captain’s hand. They stayed on the pitch and had a kick about with some of the players, before leaving the pitch to take their place in the boxes behind the manager. We were behind the Arsenal box and saw Arsene Wenger. We had a great day!
Right from the word go, Ieuan was looking forward to going. We didn’t tell him until 3 days before because he would have been so excited. We arrived and were lead away to get the kit. He was so pleased with his new Cardiff kit and the goodie bag that he received. He was very shy when he had to meet the players but did very well. His biggest smile came when he received another goodie bag from the Free Kicks Ambassador, Joe Lewis! When he went on the pitch to play with mascots he “upped” his football game and looked very impressive with his tackles, passing and dribbling. He absolutely loved doing a lap of the pitch, waving to the crowd. In the tunnel, the boys were asked who wanted to go out first with the Captain and Ieuan immediately said “me” and out he went! He had an absolutely great time. Later that evening, we were watching Match of the Day and there we were, right behind the substitution board for an Arsenal change! Two weeks later, we received a DVD of the day with three mounted photos.
Ieuan had a superb day and was very grateful to everyone who made it happen for him. What fabulous memories for a little boy!
Many thanks to all involved.
Huge thanks to Joel at Cardiff City for donating the mascot package to us and the club’s ongoing support.