A bride-to-be has agreed to play the Champions League final at her wedding.
Simonie Starkey, 26, will erect a huge screen on the big day so her Liverpool-supporting groom and his best man – a Spurs fan – can watch the match.
The 26-year-old is due to marry James Mabbett, 30, on June 1 at All Saints Church in North Ferriby, Yorkshire.
James is a lifelong Liverpool FC fan and his beloved Reds will be playing Tottenham Hotspur in the Champions League final on the same day.
On top of that, the man who will stand beside him – his brother Phil Mabbett – is an avid Spurs supporter.
After the unbelievable drama in midweek, the two brothers were faced with the dilemma of how they were going to be able to watch the game, Hull Live reports.
James said: "Our dad was a lifelong Liverpool fan and he is the reason I am. He watched all the Champions League games last season but he had a quick illness and passed before the final.
“We were of the belief that there is some sort of divine intervention for us to do this. For us to face each other on the wedding day it is mad.
"Me and my brother said there is a strange force behind this. It is mad it has happened."
Best man Phil, who has supported Spurs for 26 years, added: "He passed away nearly a year ago now. He loved his football and he would have loved this to have happened."
James had to have the toughest conversation any man could face and break the news to his fiancee Simonie. Fortunately, she was on board all the way.
“When I first found out about it, I did have a bridezilla moment,” joked Simonie. “But it is an important game for James and Phil and it is an important event.
“Knowing I will be sharing my important day with another important event I did think where is everybody’s head going to be.
“I am one of those who believe it is all or nothing. I am not going to stop them watching the game. If we are going to do it we are going to do it big.”
The couple have decided to have a projector showing the match on a big screen to cater to those who want to watch the game, with a disco on the other side of the marquee for those less interested.
Simonie admitted even she may get distracted.
“He [James] has converted me,” she said. “I never used to watch football but seeing how passionate he is I started following the games.
“I will have to keep swapping between busting moves and looking at the score. I have not been to Anfield but it is on my bucket list.”
Liverpool staged a remarkable comeback on Tuesday night when they beat Spanish giants Barcelona 4-0 at Anfield to make the final.
James said: “I knew the final was going to be on the same day. I had it in the back of my mind and was thinking if we lose I am dodging a bullet. I didn’t want to have that conversation. I didn’t give us much of a chance.
“When we got the first I was like, okay that creates a little bit of atmosphere. But when the second and third went in me and my brother went wild.”
The following evening, Spurs were 2-0 down at half-time against Ajax and looked destined to be knocked out of the Champions League.
Phil says that he called in a favour from his dad.
He said: “I remember watching the game at half-time and thinking 'this is over, we are not going to come back from this'.
“I am not religious but I said, ‘come on pops, do us a favour, help us out’. The second half started and Lucas Moura ran away with it and came up with the winner.
After the game, Phil sent his brother a picture of himself in his Spurs shirt with the caption, ‘may the best man win’.
James says that he will try and smuggle his Liverpool shirt in for the big day so he can perform his usual pre-match ritual.
“I will have to smuggle my shirt in,” he said. “It is important for such a big match that I have to go through my normal routine.
“I will always watch the game with the shirt on and kiss the badge three times before kick-off. What football can do to a grown man is incredible.”
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