Chicharito and former player Mickey Thomas toured the leading cancer centre and showed off the team’s famous silverware to patients in the teenage and young adult unit. The Mexican striker signed autographs and chatted to football fans on the wards while coaching staff from Manchester United Foundation engaged patients in a range of games to help promote the benefits of physical activity during their cancer treatment.
The visit to The Christie was arranged as part of Manchester United’s Trophy Tour around Greater Manchester. The Christie – as one of the official charity partners of Manchester United - was a ‘must do’ destination for the club on their 10-day tour of Foundation projects, local schools and supporters’ clubs.
After posing for pictures with patients and the Premiership trophy, Chicharito said: “I'm very happy; it's a pleasure to be here and visit these people. They unfortunately have some problems but hopefully with this visit and the trophy, we can make them happy today. That's the most important thing."
Cancer patient Quang Pham, a 19-year-old from Hanoi, Vietnam studying in Manchester, said: "It's so amazing to meet Chicharito. He's my favourite player, I was just speechless when I saw him.”
Jenny Haskey, head of corporate fundraising and sporting events at the charity, added: “We were delighted that Chicharito came to visit our teenage cancer patients and showcase the trophy. These patients are going through the most difficult times of their lives so these visits are a great motivational boost.”
The trophy was later put on display to allow other patients to have their photograph taken with it.
The Christie charity has been an official partner of Manchester United since 2007 funding specialist rehabilitation posts and the partnership has raised more than £300,000 for the teenage and young adult cancer unit.
For more information about The Christie charity, please visit www.christies.org