Lee to walk out with NI players for Israel match

Craigavon youngster, Lee Smylie, proudly displaying his Northern Ireland supporter's scarf, is all set to walk out with the Northern Ireland team as a McDonald's Player Escort next week.  INLM12-003
Craigavon youngster, Lee Smylie, proudly displaying his Northern Ireland supporter's scarf, is all set to walk out with the Northern Ireland team as a McDonald's Player Escort next week. INLM12-003

YOUNG Lee Smylie from Craigavon is living every young Northern Ireland fan’s dream as he prepares to walk out with the national team, after his dad won a competition with McDonald’s.

The opportunity to walk out as a Player Escort has been provided through McDonald’s grassroots football website, McDonald’s KickStart, where users can access once-in-a lifetime opportunities such as walking out as Player Escorts. The website also allows local clubs to secure funding for development projects and gain useful information on coaching or running a club.

Lee will now be walking out with the Northern Ireland team against Israel and, according to his dad Mark, he is very much looking forward to it.

Mark said: “Lee can’t wait, he has hardly been able to think about anything else.”

Lee plays centre back for Craigavon City and speaking ahead of his big performance he has some words of comfort for Michael O’Neill’s men – “I think Northern Ireland will win 3-0.”

Speaking about this opportunity McDonald’s franchisee Paul Connan said: “McDonald’s operates very much as part of the local community in Craigavon and I’m delighted that Lee has won the opportunity to walk out as a McDonald’s Player Escort. I’m sure he will enjoy this opportunity and hopefully he can see them get a win.” McDonald’s is celebrating ten years as the Official Community Partner of the Irish FA and through this partnership is helping young footballers shine.

The Community Partnership is delivering a lasting legacy for grassroots football through coach creation and education, a new Club Accreditation Scheme, through a series of Small Sided Games Centres and through the McDonald’s Irish FA Community Awards which were launched last month to recognise and rewards the unsung heroes of grassroots football. For full details and to apply for the chance for your child to walk out as a Player Escort visit www.mcdonalds.co.uk/KickStart.

To nominate someone go to www.mcdonalds.co.uk/KickStart.