Everton fan Paul Stratton has been helping Ukrainian refugees fleeing the country amid the war with Russia. He was recognized for his efforts during Everton’s friendly against Dynamo Kyiv in the coolest way imaginable.
While most sports teams would simply throw a picture of Stratton onto the jumbotron and have fans give him a round of applause, Everton took things to an entirely different level.
With Everton leading the match 3-0 at the time, Stratton had his name called to come onto the pitch and take a penalty. Before taking the field, he had a brief meeting and hug with manager Frank Lampard.
Stratton then stepped to the spot and confidently tucked home his penalty. He then ran over to the fans, dropped to his knees, and completely soaked in the moment.
Paul Stratton is an Everton fan who has been delivering essential supplies to the Ukrainian border since the Russian invasion.
Last night, in a friendly against Dynamo Kyiv, Everton subbed him on to score a penalty in front of their fans.
— HLTCO (@HLTCO) July 30, 2022
Stratton’s day job is working for Liverpool Council, but after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, he’s taken time off from work to travel to Poland and hand out supplies to Ukrainian refugees.
It was an especially cool moment given that Dynamo Kyiv is arguably the most popular club in Ukrainian football.
Would the moment have been a bit cooler if the goalkeeper actually made an effort to save the penalty? Yes, but nevertheless, what a moment for Mr. Stratton.