It was the game of a lifetime for 8-year-old Bheem Goyal on the Seattle Sounders field on Wednesday night.
Thanks to a partnership between the Sounders and the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Goyal — who is suffering from acute lymphocytic leukemia — was given the chance to kick off the Sounders game against Borussia Dortmund as the goalie.
In a video shared by the Sounders on Twitter, Goyal sported his name on the back of the team’s green jersey as he sent the crowd into cheers upon making a game-opening save.
“What a debut. What a moment. Eight-year-old Bheem Goyal starts in goal and makes an opening save!” the Sounders Twitter account captioned the heartwarming video.
After kicking the ball away from the goal and back toward the midfield, Goyal headed off to huge applause from the fans in the audience.
He was welcomed by the Sounders players on the bench, who lined up to give their honorary young player high fives.
According to Sports Illustrated, Goyal — a loyal fan of the team — earned a contract with the Sounders on July 10, which guaranteed his participation in their match against Dortmund.
Last year, the 8-year-old received an inspirational video message from goalkeeper Stefan Frei to lift his spirits during his demanding leukemia treatments, Sports Illustrated reported.
Goyal first met the full Sounders team the day of his singing for a full day of training. He took part in the goalie training with guidance from Frei and Club Director of Goalkeeping Tom Dutra