Pitch invader, 11, reveals her 'masterplan' for scoring Ronaldo's shirt

RONALDO superfan Addison Whelan took the day off school yesterday to celebrate scoring the footie star’s shirt – as she revealed she even slept with it.

The 11-year-old footie nut jumed over the pitchside barriers to get onto the grass after the World Cup qualifier between Ireland and Portugal at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin on Thursday night.


Superstar Ronaldo spotted Addison running towards him and ordered the security guards to leave her alone – before giving the overjoyed schoolgirl his shirt.

Shelbourne Under-13 striker Addison yesterday described meeting her idol as “a dream come true” – and took the day off class to spend time with her new prized possession.

And speaking to The Irish Sun last night, her proud dad Peter lifted the lid on her daughter’s “masterplan” to meet her hero.

PLAN TO MEET IDOL

Peter said: “Addison put a good bit of work into the plan and she took the day off school to celebrate it working.

“She went down to her nannie’s house today in East Wall to celebrate and chill out, she is chilling out.

“Her plan worked a treat. We had a little plan in place. We had a poster done up with Ronaldo’s name on it, asking for his shirt but I don’t think he saw it.”

He continued: “So her second part of the plan was to try and get onto the pitch. We had good seats, we were in the second row from the front, close to the corner flag, so they were good seats. And it didn’t take a whole lot to get onto the pitch.

“The were two parts to the plan. The poster was the first option. After work on Thursday I went home before the game and we sat at the table and drew a poster with his name on it and saying could we have his shirt.

“I don’t think he saw the poster so Addison had to take things into her own hands and go for the pitch. She is fast and pulled it off.”

TV cameras captured Addison storming onto the pitch and being chased by security and stewards as the whistle sounded on a scoreless draw.

Plucky Addison managed to get close to the Portuguese and Manchester United sensation after shouting his name to catch the legend’s attention.

DREAM COME TRUE

Addison, of East Wall, Dublin, recalled: “Ronaldo turned around and saw me and told them (security) to leave me, he came over to me.

“I was shaking and crying.

“I asked him ‘can I have your jersey please, I’m a huge huge fan?’ And he said ‘okay’.

“When my Dad saw him taking off the shirt his face was in shock. I was thinking ‘Oh my god, this is my dream and it’s finally coming true’.”

Addison and her family feared they were facing a €3,000 fine after her pitch dash – but officials announced they would not be issuing a fine.

Responding to the development, she told us last night: “That’s amazing news, it is so great. There was talk about me getting fined and my dad would have to pay it. Thankfully we don’t have to worry about that now.

“I wouldn’t have sold the shirt for the world! I wouldn’t have sold it in a million years! I’m going to get it framed and it’s going to go on my wall. I won’t be letting it out of my sight.”

The youngster spent yesterday fielding media queries and was due to go on the Late Late Show last night.

Addison’s father Peter said: “The interest has been immense. The phone hasn’t stopped all day. Addison is like a celebrity now!”

TALENTED FOOTBALLER

Dublin Port worker Peter is also her football coach at Shelbourne FC and told how his daughter is “making waves” as a forward with the Shels Under-13 team.

But the stunned dad last night described his girl netting Ronaldo’s shirt as “her best strike yet”.

Peter revealed to The Irish Sun how Addison was now sleeping with Ronaldo’s shirt and declared: “She is absolutely over the moon, she won’t let it leave her sight.

“She pulled some moves to get to him. She is quick for sure. She is playing great for Shelbourne. Addison is a striker. She is only 11 so she is playing for the Under-13s.

“She actually played with the Under-14s last week and scored a cracking goal from outside the box. She is well known in the club. Shelbourne want her to bring the shirt to the club and show it off. She deserves all the attention, she works hard.

“She’s doing great at Shelbourne but I have to say this is her best strike yet!

“He just asked her was she ok. Because the security guys were after grabbing her. He asked her ‘are you ok?’ And she said ‘yeah, yeah, yeah, can I have your shirt?’ And he gave it to her.

'IN HER ELEMENT'

“She is in her element. I was going to work this morning and I stuck my head into her bedroom and there she was asleep with the shirt beside her on the pillow. She slept with it. She loves him, she absolutely idolises him. She is over the moon to get his shirt.

“She’s actually not a Man United fan, we’re big Arsenal fans but she just loves Ronaldo. She is Ronaldo mad.”


As Addison’s pitch invasion made headlines around the world, Peter flagged up how it was not his daughter’s first time on the grass at the Aviva Stadium.

Peter told us: “It is not the first time she was on that pitch. She made an ad with Roy Keane and Brian O’Driscoll. It was an ad with Roy Keane and Brian O’Driscoll in the Aviva, and Roy Keane handed a ball to a girl at the end of the ad. That was Addison.

“And Roy Keane just took to her like a duck to water, signed her boots, signed her bag, gave her the ball. At the end of the ad, we were all having pizza and he came straight out and gave her the ball.

“And we still have the ball in the house. It is pride of place in the house. Now she has Ronaldo’s shirt as well.”

The Whelan family previously hit the headlines with Addison’s older sister Megan a singing sensation who has just launched her debut single with her band Melladaze.

The girl group have released I H8 U after finishing close runners up on the BBC One Little Mix The Search in 2020.

Peter said: “Addison has an older sister Megan Whelan and Megan is in a band called Melladaze which was on Little Mix: The Search.

“They got to the final last year and released their first song this week. Her sister is a singer in the band and she is flying as well. Megan is 20 and her band released her first tune this week I H8 U. It’s going well for them.

“I’ve got a singer and a budding soccer player. I’m so proud of them both.”

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