Ex-Pompey stars strap on their boots for young Willow

SMILES Willow Scotney-Williams from Paulsgrove is being helped out by, inset, Darren Anderton and Tony Male

SMILES Willow Scotney-Williams from Paulsgrove is being helped out by, inset, Darren Anderton and Tony Male

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POMPEY legends will be taking part in a charity match to help save a little girl’s eyesight.

Ex-stars including Darren Anderton, Paul Walsh, Linvoy Primus, Alan Knight and Steve Claridge will be playing in a game this Sunday.

Darren Anderton and Tony Male

Darren Anderton and Tony Male

They will be going against the former Pickwick Team at Havant and Waterlooville Football Club, Westleigh Park, to raise money for young Willow Scotney-Williams.

The toddler’s family want to send the two-year-old to China next September so she can have stem cell treatment, which could restore her sight.

But the procedure, which has been booked for September 5, costs £25,000.

Her mum Gemma Scotney, 29, of Portchester Road, North End, said: ‘Thanks to people’s kind donations and fundraising we’re on about £7,000.

‘I’m so grateful this football match has been organised and hope plenty of people will come and support it.’

The match kicks off at midday and is free to watch.

But spectators will be encouraged to buy a £3 programme, with proceeds going to Willow’s fund.

Paul Owen, 47, has helped to organise the event and is part of the Pickwick Team.

He said: ‘When we heard about Willow we wanted to help.

‘When you meet Willow you can see she’s an absolute diamond so we want to help.

‘We’re trying to register as a charity called Kids in Crisis Portsmouth where we hope to help children in the area with fundraising.

‘If we can raise £5,000 then we can register as a charity.’

As previously reported in The News, Willow was born 10 weeks early at Queen Alexandra Hospital, Cosham.

She was diagnosed with a brain haemorrhage, followed by hydrocephalus – water on the brain.

As a result, Willow has cerebral palsy and is almost completely blind.

There are other fundraising events coming up to help raise the £25,000.

Relentless Steak and Lobster House, in Elm Grove, Southsea, is putting on a three-course meal for £35 for the appeal.

There are still places left for the meal on Thursday, October 11, with all money made from ticket sales going to the family.

People are being asked to arrive at 7pm for a 7.30pm start.

Willow’s dad Jamie Williams, 26, is also taking part in the Great South Run on October 28.

To buy a ticket, for the meal email gemmascotney@hotmail.com or call 07900 980125.

To make a donation to the appeal, visit willowsvisionappeal.com.

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