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Why Tony Bellew is playing for World XI at Soccer Aid instead of England

Why Tony Bellew is playing for World XI at Soccer Aid instead of England

Soccer Aid is set to take place at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.

Tony Bellew is set to represent the World XI in UNICEF’s Soccer Aid 2024 this weekend.

On Sunday, the annual charity football event will take place at the home of Premier League side Chelsea, Stamford Bridge.

As always, England will take on the World XI with some of the biggest names from sports and the celebrity world going head-to-head to raise money for UNICEF.

Ahead of the match, it has been revealed that former boxing champion Bellew will represent the World XI.

Despite being born and raised in Liverpool, the 41-year-old is allowed to play for the World XI as the entry requirements for the team are not strict.

For example, English boxer and former Love Island star Tommy Fury made his Soccer Aid debut last year for the World XI despite being born in Manchester.

As per talkSPORT, Fury was allowed to play for the World XI because he is of Mauritian descent on his mother Chantal's side and his father John Fury is of Irish Traveller descent.

However, as reported by The Sun, why Bellew isn’t playing for the England team has not been explained.

Last year, Spice Girls singer Mel C was amongst the coaching team of the World XI, she explained "Everyone knows that I'm a Liverpool fan, so I particularly want to do well at Old Trafford and come away with a win - just as Liverpool have done a lot over the years!"

In an interview with the Irish Mirror in 2020, Mel C confirmed that she has Irish roots through her grandmother, and says she has 'a few Irish connections'.


Bellew will be playing as a goalkeeper for the World XI, he told Good Morning Britain: “My son's a goalkeeper at Everton and has been for three years. I just wanted to prove to him that I can do a tenth of what he can do, so I'm gonna be in goal.

“I'll be okay, I can use my feet and I'm pretty good with my hands to say the least, so I'm sure I'll be okay.”

The World XI will include the likes of Usain Bolt, Eden Hazard, Roberto Carlos, John Obi Mikel and Petr Cech.

Meanwhile, Jill Scott, Jack Wilshere, Jermaine Defoe, Sir Mo Farah will all be playing for England.

Mauricio Pochettino will be the manager of the World XI and Frank Lampard, Robbie Williams, Harry Redknapp, David Seaman and Vicky McLure make up the England management team.

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Featured Image Credit: Getty/ITV/UNICEF

Topics: Football, Boxing, Tony Bellew, Soccer Aid