Soccer Aid has announced that the 2019 campaign raised a record breaking £7.9m for charity, with all of the money going towards Unicef’s projects around the world to save lives and help children ‘grow up happy, healthy and able to play’.
The 2019 edition of the annual game between England and the Soccer Aid World XI was played at Stamford Bridge and finished in a 2-2 draw, before the World XI prevailed 3-2 on penalties.
This year’s match pulled in generous donations, with the UK government also matching those donations up to the value of £3m. The finally total of £7.9m was up £1.1m on 2018, while as much as £38m has now been raised through Soccer Aid since the first match 13 years ago.
“Soccer Aid for Unicef has smashed its fundraising record again this year and I couldn’t be happier,” singer and Soccer Aid co-founder Robbie Williams said.
“The match continues to go from strength-to-strength raising vital funds for Unicef and all the lifesaving work they do for children around the world. Thank you to everyone who helped make this year’s event the most successful campaign yet!”
International Development Secretary Alok Sharma said, “Soccer Aid for Unicef raised a record sum of money this year, thanks to the incredible generosity of the British public, meaning the charity can reach even more of the world’s most vulnerable children.
“Through UK Aid Match, the UK government has matched pound-for-pound public donations up to £3 million, doubling the difference the appeal makes to children’s lives.”
2019 also saw a milestone moment in Soccer Aid as female players took part for the first time ever, with former internationals Katie Chapman and Rachel Yankey lining up for England, and Brazilian pair Fran and Rosanna lining up for the World XI. It was part of ongoing FA research into mixed football.
Soccer Aid in 2020 will be returning to Old Trafford in Manchester, its original home.
“We are delighted to welcome Soccer Aid for Unicef back to Old Trafford next year. It's always an enjoyable and entertaining day and it's a privilege for us to host the game which raises funds for such a vital cause,” Manchester United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward commented.