Boy Who Inspired Jack Grealish's World Cup Goal Dance Wants Footballer To Know This

Grealish promised Finlay, who has cerebral palsy, he'd do the dance when he next scored a goal. Turns out, it happened in a pretty big game.
Jack Grealish celebrates after scoring his team's sixth goal during the match between England and Iran.
Matthias Hangst via Getty Images
Jack Grealish celebrates after scoring his team's sixth goal during the match between England and Iran.

When Jack Grealish scored his first ever World Cup goal on Monday, in England’s opening group game against Iran, fans noticed a different celebration to usual from the 27-year-old.

It turns out the goal dance – which saw the midfielder doing what can only be described as ‘the worm’, but with his arms – was part of a promise for 12-year-old Finlay Fisher, who has cerebral palsy, and met the footballer a month ago.

It was a huge moment for the footballer and for his young pal, Finlay, who was watching from home, starry-eyed, as Grealish scored and England went on to beat Iran 6-2.

After seeing the celebration on TV, Fisher – who lives with his family in Wythenshawe – was absolutely elated.

Speaking to BBC Radio Manchester, the youngster shouted: “Oh my god, that’s the best thing ever!!

“He’s my best mate. I love you Grealish.”

Grealish’s sister Holly has cerebral palsy – so when he received a letter from Manchester City fan Finlay a few months ago acknowledging that he was a great big brother, the footballer felt compelled to respond and sent him a signed shirt.

Not only that, but he surprised the youngster by turning up to his football game and having a chat with him.

During their conversation on the pitch, Finlay made the midfielder promise to do a special dance for him when he next scored a goal.

At first Finlay wanted him to do the worm, but after a swift negotiation on Grealish’s part (after all, the worm is pretty hard!) they agreed on the unusual dance move involving his arms.

Little did they know he’d be doing it during the footballer’s first ever World Cup goal, when England fans everywhere – and the rest of the world – were watching.

Speaking about the dance after the match, Grealish said: “He asked me to do a celebration for him and luckily for him it came at the World Cup.

“For me, it’s just doing a celebration. But for him that’ll mean the world to him, I’m sure – especially me doing it at the World Cup.

“So Finlay,” he added, blowing a kiss, “that one’s for you.”

Speaking on ITV’s Good Morning Britain on Tuesday, Finlay said of the goal dance: “I was just waiting for Jack Grealish to score and there it was. I was just so excited.”

He told BBC Breakfast: “At first I thought that he wouldn’t remember. Then when he did it I was like: ‘Oh my god, he’s done the worm!’”

His dad – who actually happens to be a Manchester United fan, eek – said that seeing the footballer celebrate and keep his promise to his son was “unreal”.

“He’s just scored a goal for England and then he remembered to do that celebration for Fin,” he continued. “It just shows the level of integrity and what a legend the guy is.”