World XI beat England again as Soccer Aid raises record £15m for UNICEF

·2-min read
World XI beat England again as Soccer Aid raises record £15m for UNICEF

World XI recorded a fourth straight victory over England as Lee Mack scored the winning penalty in another huge night of fundraising for UNICEF.

Tom Grennan was named man of the match, but missed in the shootout as World XI took it to six wins to England’s five in Soccer Aid history.

Robbie Williams, who performed at half-time and is the mastermind for the event, announced shortly after full-time that a record £15.6million had be raised. Donations will continue to be accepted until July 29.

Usain Bolt was on hand to lift the winners’ shield, made by Asprey London for the event along with the winners’ medals - his third triumph as World XI skipper.

 (PA)
(PA)

A lively first half saw Bolt at the centre of the action for World XI, and the former sprinter will be disappointed not to get on the scoresheet before half-time.

Fine work from Patrice Evra down the left released Bolt inside the area, but his first-time effort was pushed over the bar by David James.

Shortly afterwards, Bolt was released by Andriy Shevchenko through the middle and James was caught in no man's land, but fine defending from Gary Neville allowed England to get back into shape and the chance went begging.

World XI did then take the lead from the penalty spot as Chunkz, substituted on just minutes earlier, tumbled into Evra. Noah Beck made no mistake from 12 yards.

 (Action Images via Reuters)
(Action Images via Reuters)

England grew in confidence after going behind and pulled themselves level after Beck tripped Chunkz inside the area. Chunkz wanted to take the spot kick, only for Mark Wright to pull rank and squeezed his penalty between Petr Cech and the post to level the scores.

Grennan looked the liveliest for England in the first half and finally got his goal just minutes after the restart, holding off two defenders and firing past Tom Stoltman.

England were in the ascendency but an injury to goalkeeper David Harewood - who soldiered on - contributed to them conceding again as Wright’s weak back pass was no good for the stricken shot-stopped and Kem Cetinay raced in to level the scores.

The match went to penalties for the fifth time in 11 games and World XI were in charge after Grennan missed England’s opener. It was down to comic Mack, switching from England to World XI to score the winner.

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