Ex-Pompey star Macca gives shirt to Pepe fund

Crispin Harwood, left, and Alan McLoughlin with the Ireland shirt.
Crispin Harwood, left, and Alan McLoughlin with the Ireland shirt.
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Ex-Pompey star Alan McLoughlin has donated one of his football shirts to help raise cash for injured Pompey fan Andrew Bache.

Mr Bache, 51, known as Pepe, is on a long road to recovery after he was attacked by violent Russian ultras ahead of the first England match in Marseille at Euro 2016 last month.

Alan donated the shirt to the Pepe fund ahead of tomorrow’s benefit match for the former Blues midfielder between Pompey and AFC Bournemouth at Fratton Park.

It is the Republic of Ireland shirt he wore in Malta on September 8, 1999, for a Euro Championship qualifier. Alan, known by Pompey fans as Macca, came on as substitute in the 55th minute of a 3-2 win for Ireland.

Crispin Harwood has known Pepe for more than 40 years and has been organising fundraisers along with other close friends to help with his recovery.

Mr Harwood said: ‘We’re just made up with the donation. This must be a prized possession of Alan’s and marks him playing for his country. The fact he has kept the shirt for so long and to then give it to us is incredible.

‘We are just really thankful to Alan and to everyone who has helped Andrew in some way.’

They are planning to auction off the shirt soon and have got in contact with the Portsmouth Irish Club which may interested in buying it.

Mr Harwood said doctors at QA hospital in Cosham have reported that Pepe is stable and is making progress each day after he was initially left in a coma after the attack.

McLoughlin, who played for Pompey between 1992 to 1999, said: ‘When I heard the terrible news about Pepe, I really wanted to do something to help but I didn’t want to be in the dilemma of how much money to donate. The best thing for me to do to help was to donate something they could really utilise and hopefully raise a lot of money with so that’s why I gave my shirt.’

Previously more than £27,000 was raised to fly Mr Bache back to Portsmouth from La Timone in Marseille.

Mr Crispin said: ‘All the support has been overwhelming, not just from Portsmouth but it has been nationwide and worldwide.’

Donate at crowdfunding.justgiving.com/Pepe-from-Pompey