Thistle team up with charity to promote amputee football

Little Keeley Cerretti (7) will be at the session at Firhill on Sunday.
Little Keeley Cerretti (7) will be at the session at Firhill on Sunday.

Partick Thistle have teamed up with a Scottish charity in a bid to bring competitive amputee football to Scotland on a regular basis.

The club’s charitable trust, in partnership with the Finding Your Feet charity, is hosting its first open training session at the Jags’ Firhill complex on Sunday at 2pm.

The move to introduce opportunities for competitive amputee football north of the border stems from the fact that amputee Scots currently required to travel more than 150 miles for a game of football down south.

Finding Your Feet was set up two years ago by Corinne Hutton, who was left a quadruple amputee after losing her hands and feet to septicaemia in June 2013.

The charity aims to provide a support network to amputees and those with limb deficiency through emotional, financial and practical support and through the creation of opportunities in sport and recreation.

Thistle already successfully run other disability football training sessions, including frame football and sessions for those with difficulties in mobility and coordination.

Partick Thistle Community Trust manager Paul Kelly said: “We want to awaken an idea in the minds of people who don’t consider football to be a lifestyle option for them.

“So when Finding Your Feet approached us about amputee football there was never a doubt we wanted to be involved.

“We have put a business plan together for the next three years which will include weekly coaching sessions as well as sending coaches for certificates on training people with disabilities.

“We’re all looking forward to working with Finding Your Feet to make amputee football a reality in Scotland.”

Corinne commented: “Partick Thistle is our local club so seemed the obvious choice as a partner, so we were thrilled when they embraced the opportunity.

“We would encourage anyone with a lower or upper limb amputation to join us at Firhill next weekend and who knows, if we can create a Finding Your Feet Scottish amputee league, maybe we can set up a game with our English counterparts and ultimately beat them at something!”

Amputee football has been brought into the Scottish football spotlight by Brian Murray, a lower limb amputee who organised an awareness day at his local club Annan Athletic.

Brian (46), who currently travels from Annan to Liverpool to play for Everton Amputees, will join the coaches at Thistle to assist with the training.

Anyone interested in getting involved in the sport is being encouraged to attend. The session is open to those with either upper or lower amputations or limb deficiencies.

The project is being backed by the Scottish Football Association.