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Goetze to auction boots to help refugees

World Cup winner Mario Goetze plans to raise funds to help Germany's immigrants amidst the on-going crisis by auctioning his playing boots embroidered with the hashtag 'refugeeswelcome'. The 23-year-old forward scored Bayern Munich's second goal while wearing the special boots in Wednesday's 3-0 win over Olympiakos in their opening Champions League group-stage match.

Goetze, whose extra-time goal allowed Germany to beat Argentina in the World Cup final in Brazil last year, will wear the same embroidered boots again in Saturday's Bundesliga match at Darmstadt. "Away game at unbeaten Darmstadt and we want three points," wrote Goetze on his Facebook account. "I'm gonna play with my refugeeswelcome shoes again, which will be auctioned at the end of September."

German champions Bayern have pledged one million euros ($1.1 million) to help the plight of refugees flooding into Germany. The Bavarian giants are setting up special coaching courses with the City of Munich to provide meals, German lessons and equipment for refugee children. Around 450,000 refugees have arrived in Germany so far this year with up to one million expected in 2015, according to Germany's Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel. The majority of the 36 teams in Germany's top two leagues will wear "We're helping! refugeeswelcome" logos on their shirts this weekend.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2015


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