De Zeeuw’s charitable return to Wigan

Arjan De Zeeuw
Arjan De Zeeuw

Latics legend Arjan De Zeeuw is coming back to play in Wigan!

Unfortunately the former defender, who is widely heralded as the club’s greatest-ever player, won’t be pulling on a blue-and-white jersey for Gary Caldwell’s side.

Arjan De Zeeuw and Marco Miltenburg

Arjan De Zeeuw and Marco Miltenburg

Instead, he will be jetting over from his native Holland to play in a special game for the Joseph’s Goal charity.

And he’ll be bringing over a number of big-name, high-profile stars with him!

De Zeeuw’s Dutch Masters will be taking on a team of Latics legends at Ashton Town FC on Friday, May 13 2016, on what promises to be another night to remember.

It will be the second annual game for the charity, which was set up in honour of Wigan youngster Joseph Kendrick to raise funds for research into NKH, the incurable genetic disorder with which he was born.

It’s great to be going back to the town that gave me so much

Arjan De Zeeuw

Earlier this year, a team of Latics legends including Roberto Martinez, Graeme Jones, Emmerson Boyce and Mario Melchiot played against a side from TV soap Hollyoaks and ran out 10-0 winners.

It’s anticipated this year’s game, organised by Ashton Town chairman Mark Hayes and Wigan debt solutions provider the Hardwick Group, will be a little closer.

These days De Zeeuw works as a detective for the Dutch police but, along with colleague Marco Miltenburg, he’ll be putting together a crack team. And he can’t contain his excitement at returning to a town he loves.

“It’s great to be going back to the town that gave me so much,” said De Zeeuw.

Ashton Town will host the legends match

Ashton Town will host the legends match

“I am touched by the cause and touched by the passion of the Latics fans for the club.

“I have to come and show my passion for both.”

Marco added: “I consider it an honour to play this game with such big players for this purpose. When Mark invited me, I said yes right away.

“Many big names will be playing for Arry’s Dutch Masters, and I’m certain it’s going to be a big game for a great cause. Don’t miss it – the Dutch are coming to town!”

Also confirmed to play are former Latic Denny Landzaat and ex-Rangers star Michael Mols, with many more names to be announced over the coming weeks.

The Latics squad will also be star-studded, and fans will be invited to put forward suggestions of who they would like to see turning out.

Despite being months away, excitement is already building around town.

“The Joseph’s Goal game back in May was a simply stunning event in so many ways,” said Town chief Mark.

“To get so many big names at my football club, and to raise so much money for Joseph’s Goal, was an honour.

“To top that event would take some doing. However, once I spoke to Marco, we bounced ideas off each other and the Dutch players whom have been mentioned to fly in are absolutely ridiculous. It’s going to be one simply amazing occasion.

“To put on such an event needs sponsorship, and again Scott Sheedy at the Hardwick Group didn’t hesitate to offer his support.

“He has been an immense help both supporting the Joseph’s Goal legends events and Ashton Town FC, and I can’t thank him enough.”

Scott added: “As an Ashton lad myself, and a local employer, I always want to help our community in any way I can.

“Joseph’s Goal is a fabulous charity and both Hardwick Financial Solutions and Ashton Town are proud to support them.”

For details of how to be part of the night, follow @JosephsGoal on Twitter and for updates.