‘I had the time of my life’, says Bute’s Homeless World Cup winner

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THE Rothesay man who kept goal for Scotland on their way to glory in the Homeless World Cup has told The Buteman he had “the time of my life” during the tournament in Paris.

Willie Lawrence, his brother Sean and their team-mates lifted the trophy in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower on Sunday, August 28 after a dramatic 4-3 win over Mexico in the final.

And we caught up with Willie this week to find out what he made of his World Cup journey - and what he intends to make of the experience now the dust has settled on the Scots’ memorable victory.

“It was absolutely fantastic,” he told us. “There was a brilliant atmosphere throughout the whole tournament.

“All the teams supported all the other teams, both on and off the pitch, and you couldn’t ask for a more stunning setting.”

Willie and Sean were both eligible to take part in trials for the Homeless World Cup squad through the local Help Project, which provides assistance to young people in their first tenancies and is a partner of Street Soccer Scotland, a social enterprise formed to use sport to tackle social exclusion and thus improve the lives of a range of socially disadvantaged people which organises the Scotland squad for the annual competition.

“I was stuck in a bad routine before I got involved with the Help Project,” Willie said, but now I realise I can do a lot more with myself than just sit about and do nothing.”

Read about Willie’s Homeless World Cup adventure in full in the new issue of The Buteman - on sale on Thursday, September 8.