The Steel City derby at Hillsborough is less than two weeks away and for one young Owl, the fixture will have extra significance.
Eight-year-old Shay’s pre-match build-up will take on a completely different twist as the youngster from Ecclesfield is preparing to walk 16 miles to Hillsborough.
And the reasons behind this are very close to Shay’s heart.
The walk will begin from Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice in North Anston and finish at Hillsborough in plenty of time to watch the Owls face the Blades on Monday 4 March.
The hospice provides care for his cousin Evie Mae who has a rare chromosome deletion order and needs round-the-clock care.
Shay is hoping to raise £400 for the hospice but has already smashed through his target. His JustGiving page shows the figure at just over £1,700! (Visit his JustGiving page here)
Proud dad Jason said: “Evie-Mae is five months younger than him so he used to wonder why she couldn’t walk when they were younger.
“He's always asked questions since he was little like why can't Evie Mae walk or talk.
"As he's got older he understands it a little bit more but what he does understand is how much Bluebell Wood do for Evie Mae and her parents Keeley and Adam and brother Brandon.
“They offer so much more to families – it’s an amazing place.
“He tries to do something every year and this year he said he wanted to do something good and he came up with this idea himself.”
Any help is greatly appreciated 👍 pic.twitter.com/g1gmNOcjpC— Barry Bannan (@bazzabannan25) February 5, 2019
The St Thomas More Catholic Primary School pupil walked from Hillsborough to Bramall Lane last season but is taking on a bigger challenge this time around.
His dad continued: “He walked from Hillsborough to Bramall Lane and has always wanted to go a bit further.
“He said he wanted to walk from the hospice to the game but it’s been moved to the Monday so he is going to have to do half on Sunday and half on Monday because he'll be at school.
“We’re very, very proud of him. He is a fantastic lad, who loves his football. He’s very kind and loves to help anybody.
“He is always doing something and he loves doing things like this. As parents you to try encourage that.”
You can support Shay here - www.justgiving.com/fundraising/shayboogrady