A young footballer left fighting for life following a hit-and-run crash was invited to a Sheffield Wednesday training session to meet his idols after The Star told of his ordeal.
Lucas Thorpe, aged eight, suffered a fractured skull, shattered eye socket and broken leg when he was struck by a moped as he crossed a road on his way to a pal’s house.
After learning of the youngster’s plight, Lucas - a goalkeeper with the Young Owls under eights team - was invited by Sheffield Wednesday to the club’s training ground on Middlewood Road, where players were preparing for their last game of the season.
The youngster was allowed to watch the training session before players took it in turns to meet him.
One presented him with a football and another with a signed Sheffield Wednesday shirt.
The club has also arranged for the young goalie and nine friends to go on a tour of Hillsborough football stadium and provided the youngster with four VIP tickets to watch a game from a box next season.
Lucas’ mum, Samantha Scott, 32, said her young footballer was overwhelmed at meeting his heroes.
“He was so excited but as it got closer to the time he was going to meet the players he became more and more nervous and was silent beforehand, which as anyone who knows Lucas will know is unusual for him!” she said.
“All the players were lovely to him - they all came over and chatted and laughed and joked with him. One of them even said that if he can stop a bike he should have been back in the goal at the weekend!
“We are thankful to everyone at Sheffield Wednesday for making such a big effort with him after all he has been through - it has put a smile back on his face.
“This is something he will remember for a long time, he is a big fan.”
The rider of the bike involved initially stopped at the scene, but fled before police arrived.
He handed himself in at a police station four days later and has been bailed pending further inquiries.
Lucas, from Treeton, Rotherham, was left in a critical condition and needed to undergo emergency surgery to remove the pressure from his brain but is now recovering from his ordeal at home.