Scotland's cerebral palsy team set for World Championship final

The national side take on Northern Ireland in Salou on Thursday.

It’s not every day a Scottish football team has a chance of becoming world champions.

But that’s exactly what the Scotland Cerebral Palsy side is aiming for at the IFCPF World Championships final on Thursday.

The squad has gone all the way at the tournament in Spain and now only have Northern Ireland standing between them and the trophy.

Having progressed from their group in style, they just have to cross one more hurdle in the holiday resort of Salou to achieve immortality as the champions of the world.

Manager Billy McAdam said: “Did we think we had a chance? Probably not, all we were looking for from this trip was just an improvement on our performance at the Euros last year.

“And I think we can safely say now that we have exceeded that.”

The players have their eyes on the title, but just taking part in the final will be a proud moment.

Matthew Wynne, the captain of the 14-man squad, has had cerebral palsy since he was born and he admits he always dreamed of representing his country and brining a trophy back to Scotland.

He said: “Growing up as a young boy, my goal was always to say that I have represented my country and I have ticked that box already.

“So the only box left to tick is lifting a major trophy for Scotland, so we’re just hoping that we can win it.”

The 60-minute games are seven-a-side and as well as players with cerebral palsy, those with stroke or acquired brain injuries are taking part.

Getting a cerebral palsy Scotland team to a world championship final has been years in the making and they want to take the chance to raise the profile of the para-sport.

Greig Taylor said, head of Scotland’s cerebral palsy football programme: “I’m really proud of what we have achieved.

“This is just the beginning of something special for this team. Anyone who wants to get involved in the programme should get in touch and know that the world is your oyster.”

Whatever the result, there’s confidence in this camp that cerebral palsy football is on the up.

The game kicks-off at 11.30am on Thursday.

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