Iron players Paddy Madden and Gary McSheffrey visited nine-year-old Maisie after she was the first winner of our Easter Player Visit competition.At the start of the half term at the end of February, we launched a brand new competition asking anyone – be it parent or teachers – to nominate a child who has made significant progress at either school or day-to-day life.
Maisie was specially selected after her dad detailed how she manages to balance her life between Sheffield and Scunthorpe after the terrible loss of her mother at the age of five, while still managing to avidly support Scunthorpe United and never miss a home fixture.
In the knowledge that Maisie is “obsessed with the club, especially Paddy Madden”, the Irish striker jumped at the chance to visit the young girl, who was visiting her grandparents in Scunthorpe for the Easter holidays. He brought along side-kick Gary McSheffrey for company, with her dad stating in the application: “Maisie has been doing great at school recently, as have loads of children, but that’s not why I’m nominating her. Through it all, Maisie has continued to do well at school, especially in Maths and more importantly she has supported me through everything.
“She spends so much of her time thinking about her friends, family and especially me and I know it would make her day to see one of her heroes!”
Following the visit, Maisie was asked whether she had enjoyed the experience, while stood between both of her special visitors, with a simple “yes” all that was required, with a beaming smile on her face.
For her nanna, she could do nothing but thank the two visiting players for the impact they had made on their visit.
She explained: “Maisie is a huge fan of the club and after my son had written in to tell the club how difficult it had been for her in the last five years, luckily the club deemed that she was worthy to have a visit from Paddy and Gary.
“They’ve been wonderful today. They’ve talked to her, they’ve talked to us and they’ve just made the experience so lovely for her and she will remember this experience for quite a long while.”
Meanwhile, the two visiting played spoke highly of the experience, with Madden making his first house visit to an individual.
Paddy said: “It’s the first time I’ve done an appearance at someone’s home and it’s nice to put a smile on a little girls face. Sometimes you don’t realise what it means to the fans, so sometimes it is nice to just go out and see what it means to them.”
United’s winger McSheffrey also had this to say: “It’s always a good experience to do something like this and give something back to the fans. They mean a lot to us. A lot of people don’t realise that.
“I’ve done it a couple of times at different clubs throughout my career and it’s nice to get a feel for the local area and the public.”
The club would like to thank all entries for this competition and while it was impossible to visit every single one of those entries over the course of the Easter holidays, the players at Scunthorpe United urge you to keep up the good work and enter any future competitions that are put on.