New mural immortalises Leeds United legend and Halifax resident Dom Matteo's San Siro goal
But a group of Leeds United supporters have ensured his great goal in the San Siro more than two decades ago will not fade into the mists of time, having now immortalised the moment in a mural.
The Leeds United Supporter’s Trust’s 13th mural – at the Whistlestop Pub car park in Beeston – was created and painted by Leeds-based artist Phil Harris.
The mural will officially be unveiled today, and celebrates Matteo’s mighty contribution to that famous 1-1 draw, chanted about to this day by Leeds fans.
Dom has worked with Phil to create the impactful design and wanted to get across the message that life is all about making memories living for the moment. The mural therefore carries the caption: “A Day To Make Memories Is Today”.
It resonates with Dom, who was diagnosed with a brain tumour in November 2019 and had 10 hours of brain surgery. He was in hospital for three weeks and biopsy and test results revealed he had a large cancerous brain tumour.
Following the operation Dom underwent six weeks of radiotherapy at St James’ University Hospital and eventually ended his treatment in February 2020.
Dom said: ''I'm really proud that Leeds United Supporters’ Trust have dedicated a mural to this special moment. It’s always a talking point when I’m around Elland Road chatting to fans and I know the game holds a special place in their hearts; I’m so glad I’m part of that.
"However, when I had my brain tumour diagnosis our families’ lives were turned upside down overnight. One day, I was on TV, the next I was fighting for my life.
"I feel blessed to still be here and now I don’t take anything for granted, a close brush with death makes you realise how precious life is and wanted that to come across in the mural and encourage everyone to live for the moment."
When Harris was asked to design and paint the mural, he jumped at the chance to be involved as he had lost his brother to a brain tumour.
He said: "I lost my brother Mark Harris back in 2015. I could not turn down the opportunity to create this artwork and add it to the growing list already commissioned by the Trust. It is a very poignant piece for me for the common life changing challenges faced by my brother and Dom.”
The mural is the 13th to be commissioned by LUST, which started with the 1992 midfield mural on Lowfields Road.
Clair Hufton, Board Member at the Leeds United Supporters’ Trust, said: “Being in the San Siro that night myself, I know first-hand the legacy that game left with many supporters so it’s great to see it etched in mural form.
"It’s been an honour to have Dom directly involved in the development of the mural, seeing his passion for the club shine through, but also the challenges he’s had to face over the last few years following his diagnosis. He’s a true legend and a fighter.”