Andy Byrne’s appearance at the Homeless World Cup will mark the crowning footballing achievement of his recovery from addiction.
Andy’s journey has seen him play with Maryhill Milan in the Glasgow Sunday Amateur Football League.
Like eight others of the 16-player squad, Andy, 39 (below) from the east end of Glasgow, has been in recovery but has made great strides on and off the pitch.
The team have been promoted from the third division since being set up in 2017 and now sit in the first division while Andy is 13 months sober, now living with his partner and eyeing a career in social care after representing Scotland at the Homeless World Cup.
“It’s been a lifetime ambition of mine to play for my country since I was small,” he says. “It will help build my self-worth and shows a lot of changes in me to my family – they are really proud of me and they encourage me, they’re looking forward to it as well. I think I’ll be proud when I step out for that first game, it’s an honour, a privilege.
“I’ll give it my heart and soul. Win, lose or draw, it’s about the occasion and the opportunity. It’s once in a lifetime so I’m going to enjoy every moment of it.”