THE BROTHER of a Premier League star and Welsh international will be representing Great Britain at this year’s Deaflympics in Turkey.
Harry Allen, 28, who is the brother of Stoke City midfielder Joe Allen, has been selected for the men’s football squad to compete in Samsun in July.
The Droitwich Spa father-of-two, who works for Ormerod Rutter Chartered Accountants in town, has been deaf since contracting meningitis at the age of 15 months old and is no stranger to international football having taken part in the 2009 event in Taiwan.
The Welsh-born centre half, who spent two years at Droitwich Spa in Midland League Divisino Two, and his team-mates communicate using sign language and the referee waves a flag instead of a whistle.
“My first international call up was for the European Championships in 2007 – but I was sitting A levels at the time so my mum wouldn’t let me go.” said Harry, who also plays for Pershore Town in Midland League Division One.
“As the home nation, Turkey are the favourites – we lost to them in the Euros two years ago – and I also expect Russia and Germany to be in contention.”
Harry met his wife Jessica, who is also deaf, during the preparations for Taiwan as she was working on the logistical side of the event.
They have two young sons, Teddy and Arlo.
“With the help of my colleagues and Ormerod Rutter senior partner Peter Ormerod, I’ve passed my sponsorship target of £500 so I’ve set a new figure of £1,000 to help my team-mates,” Harry added.
Harry has to raise his own money to go to the Deafylmpics as the Government provides no funding.
And after raising more than his initial target of £500, Harry hopes the surplus funds will help other players who have not raised as much.
Anyone wishing to donate to the British men’s football team can visit Harry’s fund-raising page at http://bit.ly/2p09ikD.