By Chris Wright
Despite the Bundesliga introducing a new law to discourage players from celebrating goals by donning masks only last week, Hertha Berlin’s Anis Ben-Hatira defied the threat of a mandatory yellow card to celebrate in a Spider-Man mask after netting his side’s first goal against Schalke at the weekend.
You see, five months ago the midfielder was introduced to eight-year-old Jannik, a young Hertha fan who has been battling Leukaemia in the hospital.
The pair have struck up a friendship, with Ben-Hatira’s Instagram page full of photos of the two larking around together in superhero get-up. He even posted the pact he made with the youngster.
“We decided to fight against his illness together. In such moments I realize: a healthy person has 1000 desires. A sick person just one.
“Cute guy: you promised me to recover and I promised to stay on your side while the chemotherapy.
“I will visit you regularly. In less than 6 months we will stand in front of the fans in the Olympic stadium and celebrate your recovery!”
True to his word, Ben-Hatira has been in regular contact, even marking his goal against Schalke by retrieving the very Spidey mask he wore alongside Jannik in hospital from the touchline and slapping it over his face in tribute to his brave young chum – picking up the now-obligatory caution in the process…
However, it gets better, as it emerged that Jannik had been in attendance at the Olympiastadion, with Ben-Hatira accompanying him on a lap of the pitch after the game where almost 60,000 fans gave him a standing ovation…
How great is that? Very great is the answer.
(Via Project Babb)