Big day for AFC Wimbledon's Wembley mascot
Ten-year-old Luke Pickard’s debut as an AFC Wimbledon mascot will come on the big stage this Monday when he leads the Dons out at Wembley – and he’s been struggling to sleep due to the excitement!
Luke’s name was picked out in a draw earlier this week with Paul Robinson doing the honours and his father Tom joked that the defender is now his son’s joint favourite player with Lyle Taylor!
Indeed, it will be an emotional time for Tom too as he was at Wembley just over 28 years ago when the Dons famously beat Liverpool.
Luke plays football for Wandgas Youth FC in Worcester Park and his imminent appearance at Wembley has been the talk of the football club and among fellow pupils at St Cecilia’s School!
“Luke is mega-chuffed and he is so excited,” said Tom. “In his class the other day they did a ‘show and tell’ with children saying what they were doing over the Bank Holiday weekend. Children said things like they were going to Hampton Court or visiting other attractions, but I think Luke’s big day trumped the lot.
“He is very excited. He told his team-mates at football training, quite a few of them are AFC Wimbledon fans and they are also going along to the game on Monday. Luke is a confident lad and he’s a bit disappointed that he can’t go on the pitch and do a warm-up!
“Luke’s younger brother Jack (aged eight) said that he wants to be a mascot at Wembley too! I told him he can be a mascot next season, but he wants it to be at Wembley. Hopefully, it will not be another 28 years before we get there again!
It’s been a successful season for Luke in terms of his own football this season with Wandgas Youth winning two cups and hopefully he will be a lucky charm for the Dons!
After all, the odds of Luke winning our mascot draw were 146/1!
The ITV cameras are aiming to follow Luke’s big day and a feature is planned to appear on the TV station’s news bulletin from 6.00 pm on Monday.