A young sportsman who suffered life-changing injuries after falling from a moving bus will return to the pitch as a coach for a match in his name.
Seb Goold, nine, from Wansford, was on his way back from a rugby tournament in Holt, Norfolk, in April when he fell out of the emergency door.
The Stamford Rugby Club player suffered terrible injuries and eventually had to have his right leg amputated above the knee to save his life. After 30 operations and weeks of rehabilitation he was able to return home to his family just before Christmas.
Seb was a keen sportsman before his accident and his family and friends wanted to help him retain that passion. They set up the Seb Goold Trust to raise money for a £50,000 prosthetic leg which will enable him to once again play the sports he loves.
They outlined their goals in a statement sent on behalf of the trust, which said: “Before this life-changing incident Seb was an outstanding sportsman who always challenged himself (and his friends and team mates!) with his enthusiasm and desire to improve.
“He has a great sense of humour which has kept him and his family going. His desire to get better is truly astonishing considering what he has already overcome. He has had to change his ambitions but is determined to recover and in the future excel at Paralympic sports.”
The statement added: “Seb is a sportsman; his ability before the accident was noted by many sports coaches and teams – he won most races and games that he entered! We wish to help Seb maintain his athletic potential by raising money for this top-of-the-range leg.”
To help boost the fund, coaches at One Touch Football, where Seb was a player, have organised a charity match between dads and coaches and ex-Peterborough United players.
The match will take place at Stamford AFC’s Borderville Sports Centre on Sunday, March 22. Seb will return to the pitch as coach of the One Touch Football team, with his brother Ben alongside him as goalkeeping coach.
One Touch Football coach Scott McKenzie, who managed the under-8 and under-9 teams that both Seb and Ben played for, is one of those organising the event.
He said: “While he was in hospital I made him a promise that I would sort out a game between the dads and coaches, and the Posh legends.”
Alongside the match there will be a raffle and auction. Stamford AFC, which kindly agreed to host the match free of charge, has donated a signed Lionel Messi Barcelona shirt to be sold. Bidding is currently at £300 and organisers hope to see a big increase on that figure.
Scott is looking forward to a positive day. He said: “Seb is back to his cheeky self. His sense of humour is all still there - it’s fantastic to see.
“From where he was back in April to where he is now is phenomenal.”
News of Seb’s accident shook the footballing community in and around Stamford. People were quick to offer support to his family.
“All the rest of the lads on his team have been fantastic from day one,” said Scott. “They all sent him video messages.
“The football world has been brilliant. We’ve had signed shirts from Wayne Rooney and Frank Lampard and a video message from Ledley King. It’s gone crazy.
“A lot of people have been touched by the story and how great a kid he is. It’s all very positive news.”
Scott is still looking for business sponsorship for the charity match. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.