Paralympian and England CP footballer Alistair Patrick-Heselton has been announced as this year’s Football For All inductee.
The Milton Keynes man will now receive one of football’s most esteemed honours – induction into the National Football Museum Hall of Fame, supported by The PFA.
Alistair was highly rated as a young footballer and later played semi-professional football when he sustained terrible injuries in a car crash. After months in a coma Alistair was told he would never walk again, but after being contacted by The FA he began playing CP football for Cerebal Palsy or brain injury sufferers.
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Alistair has never looked back, playing in the CPIRSA World Championships for England and the Paralympics GB team at London 2012, where he helped the team secure a silver medal.
Patrick-Heselton is one of nine great players due to be inducted to the National Football Museum Hall Of Fame, at a ceremony at the museum in Manchester on 21 September. This year’s other inductees include Billy Bonds, Frank Lampard, Bob Wilson, Charlie Roberts, Rachel Yankey, and Kelly Smith. Former Everton midfielder Gary Speed will also be honoured.
The inductees were decided by a host of the game’s greats and Hall of Fame members including; Sir Geoff Hurst, Gordon Banks, Sir Bobby Charlton, Peter Schmeichel, Roger Hunt, Kevin Keegan, Bryan Robson, Francis Lee, Trevor Francis, Ossie Ardiles, George Cohen, Norman Hunter, Sue Lopez and Marianne Spacey, making the England Paralympian’s achievement even more special.
Kevin Haygarth, Interim Director of the National Football Museum, said: “We are delighted to bestow Alistair Patrick-Helselton with the honour of a place in the Hall of Fame.
“Alistair’s story is a great example of how football changes lives beyond the elite game. We look forward to inducting as The FA’s Football For All award winner, alongside previous names including David Clarke, Stephen Daley and Martin Sinclair.”
Speaking about the FA-supported inductions of Smith, Yankey and Patrick-Heselton, FA Chairman Greg Clarke said “Kelly, Rachel and Alistair are wonderful triumvirate for this induction and testimony not only to their talent, but to the scope and scale of football offered by The Football Association. Together they are the embodiment of the For All message that is central to our work today.”
Gordon Taylor OBE, Chief Executive of the PFA who are the main supporters of the Hall of Fame said “We have been pleased to support the National Football Museum since its inception, and subsequently the Hall of Fame, giving fitting recognition to those who have contributed their own special chapters to football’s history book. This year’s nominees fully merit their inclusion.”