Brazil-bound football star warms up in the Eden tropics before the World Cup
An English footballing phenomenon heading for the World Cup has warmed up with a stunning display in the Eden Project rainforest.
Three-time World Freestyle Football champion Andrew Henderson, 22, will be performing in Brazil for the finals of the FIFA World Cup, which starts on June 12.
Freestyle football is the art of intricate ball-control and spectacular tricks with a football. Andrew’s visit to Eden – during which he performed physically-demanding freestyle tricks in the extreme heat and humidity of the Rainforest Biome – has given him an insight into the conditions that the England squad will encounter in Brazil.
Andrew said: “It was so enjoyable to freestyle around the Eden Project and even on top of the Biomes!
“Although I live in London, I grew up in Cornwall and I am proud to share what I love to do in this county. It was hot inside the Rainforest Biome and this has prepared me well for Brazil.
“I hope the England team get a chance to experience this level of heat and humidity before Brazil otherwise it might be a bit of a shock to them.
Originally from Truro, just 15 miles away from Eden, Andrew has worked with some of the world’s greatest footballers, including Barcelona stars Lionel Messi and Neymar – both of whom are set to star at the World Cup this year - and former World Cup-winning captain of Brazil Cafu.
England are due to play their final World Cup warm-up tomorrow (Saturday June 7) against Honduras in Miami. Their first game at the World Cup is on June 14 against Italy in the Amazonian city of Manaus, where temperatures are set to soar above 30C and the humidity is incredibly high, very similar to Eden’s Rainforest Biome.
As well as performing within the Rainforest Biome, Andrew also made a breathtaking appearance on the roof of the building, as well as exploring the outdoor gardens. Eden made a video of his spectacular tricks at http://youtu.be/UQwT3K4pS6Q.
The Rainforest Biome is the world’s largest indoor rainforest and probably the best place in the UK to acclimatise for tropical conditions. It is home to around 16,000 individual tropical plants and features a canopy walkway and a lookout point high above the treetops.
Andrew’s performances at the tournament are for World Cup sponsors Castrol.