Football game marks the approaching fifth anniversary of Manchester Arena bombing

  • ITV Granada reporter Amy Welch reports from Manchester City Academy Stadium

Former footballers have taken on a group of celebrities in a football game to mark the approaching fifth anniversary of the Manchester Arena bombing and help those affected by that terrible night.

The event, called Manchester Remembers, was organised by former police officer Aaron Lee.

He was one of the first on the scene during the attack in 2017, and is still in close contact with many of the affected families.

The team sheets for the game were made up of the likes of Paddy McGuinness, Wes Brown and Matt Le Tissier.

Comedian Jason Manford said he was honoured to be asked to take part but was feeling nervous about his performance on the pitch.

"It's obviously very humbling to be involved," he said. "At the same time to be playing football in front of actual people is not my number one skillset, but what I lack in skill I make up for in enthusiasm."

  • The match was streamed live on the Granada Reports Facebook page.

All proceeds from Manchester Remembers will go to five charities set up after the attack:

  • The Chloe and Liam Together Forever Trust

  • Liv’s Trust

  • The Megan Hurley Foundation

  • The Remembering Nell Foundation

  • Eilidh's Trust

A fundraising target of £100,000 has been set and those wanting to donate can either text 22MCR to 70085 to give £5, or donate on the Manchester Remembers website.

The teams lining up before kick off

Millie Tomlinson and Lucy Jarvis, who performed in the Manchester Survivors' Choir, said they were moved by people's ongoing support.

"I think it's a really good idea and shows what Manchester is about - everybody coming together and doing things for good," they said.

"It doesn't feel like it's been five years and it's nice to know that people are still remembering."

The Arena explosion killed 22 people - including an eight-year-old - and injured 1,000 more.