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WATCH: Surprise message from UEFA Champions League winner for Bonar Bridge kids teams

By Niall Harkiss

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Children at Bonar Bridge football club enjoyed an 'international' surprise last week when they received a message from former South African footballer and current Manchester United first team coach Benni McCarthy.

The former UEFA Champions League winner sent a video message to the Sutherland club's first team manager to extend his wishes to the children and senior players at Bonar Bridge, bidding them all the best for their season ahead.


Bonar Bridge FC manager Bobby Breen said: "After we appeared on 'A View from the Terrace' on BBC Scotland, myself and Robbie thought – how can we help to put the spotlight on the work we are doing with our younger kids?

"A good friend of mine, John Comitis came down with Benni McCarthy to watch a cup final I was involved in when I was still in South Africa. After that, myself and my son would often go to watch Benni's team, Cape Town City. I also played football with Benni's agent, Rob Moore. I got in touch with Rob and sent him the documentary and suggested that it would be great if the kids could receive some words of encouragment from Benni.

"The very next day I received a video from Benni. How awesome is that? I thought it would be nice if the kids could send a video back to Benni and they were delighted to be able to do that."

Friends together in South Africa, John Comitis, Bonar Bridge manager Bobby Breen and Benni McCarthy.
Friends together in South Africa, John Comitis, Bonar Bridge manager Bobby Breen and Benni McCarthy.

The club, which trains and plays at Migdale playing fields in Bonar Bridge, rejoined the North Caledonian League as a senior team in 2019, but continue to take big strides forward running coaching sessions with primary age children and teenagers in the local area.

Mr Breen added: "On Friday nights, we have the P1-7 kids training with around 40-50 in attendance – including 20 who make the journey down from Kinlochbervie. We take them to competitions in the summer and we also hold our own Kyle Cup in the summer with teams coming from Tain, Dornoch, Brora, Golspie, Ullapool and Kinlochbervie to compete.

"We also hold training for teenage players on Tuesday nights and have about 20 attending. We try to get them games when we can, and two weeks ago we arrange travel to take them down to watch Ross County for a midweek game."

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