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She ran onto the pitch at full-time in a bid to meet Cristiano Ronaldo, and was almost denied the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to do so by the matchday stewards.
But Ronaldo showed his class by asking them to leave her alone, before giving young Addison a hug and handing her his match-worn shirt.
He couldn't evade Shane Duffy and he couldn't evade this young girl, who will have the memento of Ronaldo's shirt after giving the Portugal star a hug
:computer: https://t.co/gKUO2jcTtR #RTEsoccer #IRLPOR pic.twitter.com/l680nKNZIC
- RTÉ Soccer (@RTEsoccer) November 11, 2021
She recounted her version of events on Irish television and said her "dream was coming true" after meeting the Portuguese superstar.
"First of all, I jumped over the barrier," Addison told RTE's Morning Ireland in quotes published by punditarena.com.
"Then I sprinted onto the pitch but there were security guards running behind me and two coming from the other corner. I just sprinted.
"When I saw the other two, I ran towards the halfway line so I could swerve around them. They caught me and I was just screaming Ronaldo's name.
"He turned around and he saw me and he was telling them to leave me. He came over to me. I was in shock and I was crying and I said 'can I have your jersey please? I'm a big, huge fan.' He was saying 'are you okay?'
"When my dad saw him taking off the shirt, his face was in shock. I was like 'oh my god, this is my dream and it's finally coming true.'"
Shelbourne U13 player Addison Whelan gets Ronaldo's jersey :heart_eyes:#RedsTogether ' #Since1895 pic.twitter.com/YgOp9f4ihF
- Shelbourne FC (@shelsfc) November 11, 2021
Addison is a keen footballer herself and plays for Shelbourne's under-13 side. The club subsequently posted a tweet dedicated to the youngster, which has been liked more than 1,500 times.
The result from the game itself means Portugal need another draw in their final qualifier at home to Serbia on Sunday to secure top spot in the group and a place in Qatar next year.
Meanwhile, Ireland's World Cup hopes are long gone, but they can finish third in the group with a win over Luxembourg on the same day.
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