Sunderland and Newcastle fans join forces for charity game in aid of Bradley Lowery and Frankie Sherwood
Rival football fans came together as they showed their support for two brave youngsters by taking part in a charity match.
Funds were raised for cancer-battling children Bradley Lowery and Frankie Sherwood in the game, held at Silksworth Sports Complex in Sunderland.
Both Bradley, five, from Blackhall, and Frankie, three, from North Tyneside, are fighting neuroblastoma.
As supporters of Sunderland and Newcastle United respectively, their stories have touched the hearts of football fans around the world.
With that in mind, fellow supporters of the North East rivals joined forces to take part in the charity game.
Kyle Robinson, from Sunderland, was one of the main organisers, alongside his Newcastle-supporting cousin Dean Sowerby, from Fenham, Newcastle.
The teams were hoping to raise as much as £2,000.
Mr Robinson said: “Bradley and Frankie are both such inspirational young lads and we really wanted to do something to help them.
“With me and Dean being cousins, we were able to organise this quite easily and get plenty of lads together to take part.
“Everyone who played donated at least £10 each, and Silksworth Sports Complex allowed us to use the pitch for free.
“It was a great occasion to be involved in and I hope the funds we raised will help in some way.”
Bradley’s cancer is terminal, and he was mascot for the second time at Sunderland’s game against Chelsea at the Stadium of Light – even scoring a penalty in the warm-up.
The world showed its support for the youngster by sending him an incredible amount of Christmas cards, with over 250,000 delivered to him.
Frankie, meanwhile, was mascot for Newcastle’s match against Sheffield Wednesday on Boxing Day.
After a recent bout of chemotherapy, Frankie’s family hopes he be able to also try a new kind of therapy in London.
Mr Sowerby added: “It was really nice for the two sets of supoprters to come together for this event.
“You’ve got to put rivalries aside at times like this. Cancer has no colours.
“Football matters to us all, but it isn’t life or death.
“Stories like Bradley’s and Frankie’s put everything into perspective.”
Meanwhile, another charity game between Sunderland and Newcastle fans is to take place at Washington FC’s former home, Albany Road, on Sunday, January 22.
Funds will be raised for Bradley and Frankie, as well as Hope Feeney, who is also battling neuroblastoma.
Kick-off is at 1.30pm and entry is free, although gate donations will be gratefully received.