Soccer Aid 2024 - Why Lee Mack is playing for Rest of the World XI and not England

Lee Mack on The 1% Club
-Credit: (Image: ITV)

Charity football match Soccer Aid returns tonight with another thrilling encounter between England and the World XI. The annual match sees celebrities join former professional players to raise money for UNICEF.

Soccer Aid for UNICEF 2024 will take place on Sunday 9 June at Stamford Bridge, London with England taking on the Soccer Aid World XI FC. The match will air on ITV, ITVX and STV at 6pm.

A quick look at the line-ups though will see a few head-scratching picks, such as comedian Lee Mack named in the World XI FC side despite being born in England. Lee, whose real name is Lee Gordon McKillop, was born in Southport. He now lives in East Molesey, Surrey, with his wife Tara and their three children.

Read more Sam Thompson's Soccer Aid dream 'under threat' as he suffers injury

But the host of ITV quiz show The 1% Club has been selected in the World side due to his Irish heritage. He only found out about his Irish roots when he went on the BBC show Who Do You Think You Are? in 2018.

He learned that his maternal grandfather Joe' grandparents were born in Ballina, County Mayo. They raised Joe there after his mother left him with them and moved to Canada.

The full line-up of players for Soccer Aid 2024


  • Frank Lampard (Co-Manager)

  • Harry Redknapp (Co-Manager)

  • Robbie Williams (Co-Manager)

  • Actress Vicky McClure (Coach)

  • Paddy McGuinness (Celebrity Goalkeeper)

  • David James (Professional Goalkeeper)

  • David Seaman (Goalkeeping Coach)

  • Jill Scott (Captain)

  • Cricketer Stuart Broad

  • Actor Bobby Brazier

  • I'm A Celeb winner Sam Thompson

  • Footballer Jermain Defoe

  • Pundit Karen Carney

  • Footballer Gary Cahill

  • Singer Tom Grennan

  • Jack Wilshere

  • Footballer Joe Cole

  • Olympic hero Sir Mo Farah

  • Comedian Alex Brooker

  • Dragons' Den star Steven Bartlett

  • Actress Erin Doherty

  • Footballer Ellen White

  • Footballer Theo Walcott

  • Actor Danny Dyer

  • YouTuber Miniminter

  • Sports promoter Eddie Hearn

  • Former hockey star Sam Quek

  • Night Manager actor Tom Hiddleston

  • Sidemen star Billy Wingrove (Soccer and skills coach for both sides)

World XI

  • Mauricio Pochettino (Manager)

  • Jesus Perez (Coach)

  • Usain Bolt (Captain)

  • Footballer Eden Hazard

  • Boxer and reality star Tommy Fury

  • Comedian Maisie Adam

  • Gladiator Diamond

  • Footballer Roberto Carlos

  • Actor Martin Compston

  • Presenter Roman Kemp

  • Comedian Lee Mack

  • YouTuber Theo Baker

  • Footballer Kaylyn Kyle

  • Comedian Jason Manford

  • Footballer John Obi Mikel

  • Footballer Michael Essien

  • Footballer Patrice Evra

  • Footballer Petr Cech (Professional Goalkeeper)

  • Boxer Tony Bellew (Celebrity Goalkeeper)

  • Footballer Alessandro Del Piero

  • Actor Emmett J Scanlan

  • Spain footballer Olga Garcia

  • France footballer Kheira Hamraoui