Sheffield FC’s worldwide funding campaign has been supported by Borussia Dortmund and Germany midfielder İlkay Gündoğan and former German internationals Sebastian Kehl and Christoph Metzelder.
The players have voiced their support for Sheffield FC to raise more than £2m to switch from its current home at Dronfield, North Derbyshire, to its original home at Olive Grove Sports Ground in the city..
Gündoğan, who has 11 international caps for Germany, said: “Sheffield FC deserves our support to move back home, to protect and honour the roots of our beautiful game.
“Without Sheffield FC, there would be no football.”
The centre midfielder has also donated one of his match shirts for auction, with all proceeds going towards the campaign.
Metzelder, a former Borussia Dortmund and Real Madrid defender and present chairman of TuS Haltern, who have donated to the campaign, said: “Football has given me the opportunity to follow my dreams, to discover the world and to become independent at very young age.
“For so many of us football is the greatest gift and joy of life. For this I thank Sheffield FC and the pioneers of 1857. We need to give something back now.”
The campaign originated with the aim of encouraging football fans to donate £1 and professional football clubs to donate the year of their foundation.
European clubs such as Germany’s Borussia Dortmund, established in 1909, TuS Haltern, established in 1882, Rot-Weiss Essen, established in 1907, have donated their foundation year in Euros, with Switzerland’s FC St. Gallen, established in 1879, giving £1879 and FC St. Pauli of Germany £500.
Pascal Kesseli, CEO of FC St. Gallen, said: “As the first and oldest football club of Switzerland we are proud to partner with Sheffield FC on this unique project. We need to revive the games’ heritage for the next generation and bring football back home.”
Football fans from across the globe are support the campaign, with more than £16,000 raised since launch, andcash coming in from as far as Australia.
For donations to the project visit http://igg.me/at/homeoffootball
* Sheffield FC have arranged an extra friendly for this Sunday when Andy Kiwoyma’s side host Yorkshire Amateur League side Grangefield at 2pm.
Sheffield FC get European backing for £2m appeal to return to original home