Life-long Manchester United fan and coward-punch attack survivor Danny Hodgson was given memories to last a lifetime after enjoying the chance to get up close and personal at the English Premier League giants’ WACA Ground training session.
Around 5000 fans braved the wet weather to watch their heroes go through their paces ahead of their blockbuster friendly against Aston Villa at Optus Stadium on Saturday, but it was Hodgson who took the spotlight.
Supported by girlfriend Jessica Pollock, Hodgson sported a huge grin as he watched on from the hallowed WACA turf.
Hodgson was left fighting for life in September last year after being punched without warning by a 17-year-old while celebrating after a game for ECU Joondalup.
The hit caused him to fall, striking his head on the ground and causing traumatic brain injuries that the 26-year-old barely recovered from, with his parents revealing they were warned to expect the worse.
However, against the odds, Hodgson fought back and walked out of the hospital on the same day his teenage attacker was sentenced to more than three years in jail.
Manchester United have rallied around the English-born soccer player, and the local supporter’s club is hosting a silent auction on Thursday night at Crown to raise money to help Hodgson’s continued recovery.
The night features United legend and longest-serving captain Bryon Robson, who won two Premier League trophies at the club.
Premier League players such as Dean Henderson and Dominic Calvert-Lewin have previously donated to Hodgson’s cause.
Despite less than ideal weather, fans packed the WACA ground as Manchester prepared for their Villa showdown.