Match for Michaela launches

Published Thursday, 25 October 2012
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Donegal manager Jim McGuinness was among the guests at the launch of Match for Michaela, which takes place at Casement Park next weekend.

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The event has been billed as a festival of football - and will feature McGuinness's All-Ireland champions taking on an Ulster select in front of 30,000 spectators.

It has all been organised in support of Michaela McAreavey, who was murdered on honeymoon in Mauritius in January 2011.

The Donegal manager said he will be fielding a strong team.

"From our point of view it's great to be All-Ireland champions because it gives us the opportunity to participate in the game and when Mickey came up to me at the Ulster All Stars the first thing I said was anything we can do to help," Jim McGuinness told UTV.

"We are hoping to put out as strong a team as possible.

"Fingers crossed we will get the best team out possible. Obviously we are going to need to with the calibre of opposition the lads will be going out against but fingers crossed it will be a good run out for the province as well in terms of their preparation for the cup."

There has already been quite a legacy following Michaela's tragic death and all the money raised at the match will go towards her foundation, which is already doing great work.

"It will give us much needed proceeds," said John McAreavey.

"We can roll out our camps throughout Ireland and looking to the future, we have big plans. We are very much looking forward to delivering those plans. We have already started with a summer camp, Michaela Girls Summer Camp in Tyrone this year, we are planning to roll out next year and long term we want the camps to be in every county in Ireland."

A huge crowd is expected but it is hoped some tickets will be available on the day.

Mr McAreavey said those who turn out won't be disappointed.

He continued: "We have got Janet Devlin singing, we have More Power to Your Elbow and we have a few other things that are happening but we don't want to give too much away.

"I believe that the audience would be left feeling very excited by the end of the night."

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