Kieran’s World Cup is our annual Charity Day, raising funds for an amazing Manchester charity, 42nd Street who support young people under stress. It’s named in memory of Kieran Crump Raiswell (see below). It’s played at our usual venues but with a slightly different format: 4 games in an hour against different teams. No trophies - we’re playing for fun and all the registration fees go to a good cause. REGISTER HERE
Kieran Crump Raiswell
13 Apr 1994 - 16 Jan 2013
Kieran's World Cup, the Respect League's annual charity day is named in memory of Kieran Crump Raisewell, a player with FC Bluestar, who was tragically killed, aged just 18, in January last year.
Kieran's parents, Christine and Roland, have asked that the funds raised go to a brilliant, small Manchester charity, 42nd Street, that supports children and young people under stress.
The inaugural 2013 Kieran's World Cup saw over 400 kids raising over £1,000. The 2014 Kieran's World Cup saw over 1,000 kids from 100 teams play 200 matches in 4 locations on one morning to raise over £2,000!
A personal tribute from Respect League Chairman, Andrew McIntyre:
Kieran was the son of one of my oldest friends, Christine. And he was the oldest friend of one my sons, Joe. He was part of all our lives for 18 years.
Kieran and Joe were babies together, wriggling on the floor; they were toddlers together, blowing out the birthday candles; and they were little boys together, playing epic one-v-one football matches on our driveway, the first one to 100 wins! - even if, sometimes, it was too dark outside to see.
While the other kids in the neighbourhood were re-staging City versus United on their driveways, on ours it was often Kieran's Chester City versus Joe's Middlesbrough. You should, of course, blame the parents! Roland and I thought that lower league fandom would be character-building for Kieran and Joe. Others thought it was just child-abuse!
From the age of 11, they became FC Bluestar team mates together and I became Kieran's football coach. So we spent most Wednesday evenings and most Sunday mornings together. I'm not sure how much he learned from me, but I learned a lot about Kieran, and I'd like to share some of that with you…
On the pitch, Kieran was a gifted forward, scoring well over 100 goals and unselfishly creating many more for his team mates. He had the ability to 'ghost' past defenders and he always backed his own ability inside the penalty area.
But what stood out about Kieran was his character. He was intelligent and a thoughtful listener; he was unerringly loyal, sticking with his team through thick and thin; he was quietly determined, never one for screaming, shouting or theatrics, he just got on with it; above all he was one of the most gentle boys I've ever coached and that made him caring and encouraging.
When he used these traits to become a coach himself, and to nurture young players' talent, it made me enormously proud.
Kieran was looking forward to starting University in Sheffield. My son, Joe, was hoping to join him there. But, on the afternoon of 16 January 2013, while walking along the street near his home, Kieran was the victim of an unprovoked, fatal knife attack.
His funeral, on 1 March, was standing room only, attended by hundreds of young people who knew him and loved him. All his FC Bluestar team mates were there and some read moving tributes to him. There is something fundamentally wrong about a funeral for a happy, healthy 18 year old with a bright future.
Nearly three later, this still makes no sense to any of us. It never will. How Kieran lost his life will always be a tragedy. But how he lived his life will always be an inspiration. Particularly to his younger sister Anna and his younger brother, Paddy.
By naming our event Kieran's World Cup, we'd like to honour him and to keep that inspiration alive. When I think of Kieran, which I do often, I feel proud that I knew him.