When our ALDI MiniRoos Half-time Heroes ran on to the pitch during the Caltex Socceroos' victory over Syria there was a super hero among them – little Hughie!
Hughie has been sick since birth with a series of severe complications that leave him struggling through each and every day.
The courageous kid has several organ malformations and also suffers from chronic lung disease as well as painful conditions that mean Hughie spends over 18 hours a day receiving medication and nutrition through tubes.
But his mother Nicole explained that Hughie lets nothing get in the way of his football.
She said: “Because of the extensive nature of Hughie’s medical conditions, he is in chronic pain and experiences regular and debilitating fatigue.
“However Hughie has never let any of this effect his love for life and passion for adventure.
“He absolutely loves footie, and enjoys a kick about any chance he gets.”
She added: “This year he was old enough to join our local club, Kiama Junior FC. I was nervous to start with as I wasn’t sure if they would let Hughie play.
“They welcomed us immediately, and were so willing to accommodate Hughie and his needs.
“In order to help Hughie participate as much as possible I volunteered to coach his little ALDI Miniroos team.
“Like the club, the young lads in the team and their parents have been truly amazing and inclusive.
“It’s been a very special season for us all. They have become great friends in this fantastic family friendly, community focused, footie club.”
Hughie had a chance to live his dream by playing on a professional pitch in front of a big crowd at the Socceroos game with his Kiama Junior FC pals.
Nicole added: "Hughie had a truly amazing time. He hasn’t stopped talking about it to me and anyone who will listen, bless him. Thank you so much for those memories.
"We are all buzzing from it, Hughie hasn’t lasted that long for a very long time.
"The club are also extremely grateful for so many of its players to be part of such an opportunity and once in a lifetime experience."