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football fan

By Alexander Ritchie and Chris Adams


This is the moment a football-crazy kid burst into tears after his great-grandfather presented him with surprise tickets for a cup final at Wembley.

Louis Klimek, nine, thought he was going to watch Oxford United’s Checkatrade Trophy final against Coventry City on television – until 80-year-old Douglas Prowse stunned the youngster with tickets to the famous stadium.

Louis’s adorable reaction – in which he initially runs away from Douglas in shock and then weeps as he says thank you – was caught on camera by his mum Rachel.

The Oxford fans were among 74,434 inside Wembley to witness their team’s 2-1 defeat – but even that couldn’t dampen Louis’s spirit.

Rachel, 30, from Banbury, Oxfordshire, said: “Seeing Louis’s reaction knowing how much he loves the sport – it was amazing. We didn’t even expect him to be like that to be honest.

“Obviously, it was a really big match. We managed to get tickets but we wanted to surprise Louis as we knew that it would mean more to him on the day.

“So we asked my granddad to give them to him – we knew that it would mean a lot more coming from him, since he’s obviously such a big Oxford United supporter.

“Louis supports Liverpool but Oxford are definitely his second team because so much of his family are from there.

“He loves any football team. He knows where they are in all the league tables, and he knows all the players for the teams. Football is all he talks about with his great-grandad.

“Whenever we see them all they talk about is how Liverpool or Oxford are doing. It’s very much football-orientated for them both to be honest.

“Once at Wembley, he was just amazed. He just kept saying how amazed he was, and how big it was.

“It was quite surreal for him, a 9-year old, to be able to go there – he had a smile on his face all day, bless him, so he did really enjoy it.”

Louis was visiting London for the weekend with Rachel, his dad Chris, a 35-year-old tiler, and little brother Alfie, five.

Life-long Oxford supporter Douglas – who now lives in Shepherd’s Bush but travels back to Oxford for every home game – was waiting for Louis in a pub to present him with the tickets.

Rachel, a primary school kitchen manager, said: “He’s been to Anfield, he’s seen Liverpool play, but I think it was quite different.

“He said that it was amazing – he had a smile on his face all day bless him, so he did really enjoy it.

“I think it was just excitement when he got there. I think it was a disbelief as well. It was emotional for everyone.

“My father unfortunately passed away two years ago and he was a really big Oxford United supporter as well.

“He actually went to Wembley with my sister a couple of years ago, but if he was still here he would be definitely gone this time too.

“He used to love it – he and his dad used to meet up at the football matches together, so he was a big supporter as well.

“But unfortunately, he’s not here anymore, but he would have definitely been there if he could have been. He had a heart attack in May 2015 – he hadn’t been ill or anything, it was quite sudden.

“With all the colour and the noise, I don’t think Louis had seen anything like it before. In the end, the result didn’t even matter.”