A BRAVE Solihull soldier who was awarded a George Cross for his courageous actions will be honoured by his favourite football team, Birmingham City.
Lance Corporal Matt Croucher was leading a group of four Marines through a poorlylit compound in Afghanistan's Helmand Province when they came across a live grenade.
The 24-year-old, from Acocks Green, realised the tripwire had been pulled and instinctively threw himself down, pinning it between his rucksack and the ground to absorb the explosion.
His equipment and clothing prevented any lethal shards from causing any serious injury and he suffered only minor wounds and disorientation in the blast, last February.
Players at the club were so impressed when they heard about the lifelong City fan they teamed up with Noel Edmonds for a surprise live TV tribute on Sky One show Noel's HQ.
Matt will also be treated to a VIP day when he goes along to the Blues' training ground to watch the squad train before having lunch with manager Alex McLeish and the players.
A club spokesman said: "Blues decided to show just how proud we are of him and several players, including James McFadden, Seb Larsson and Lee Carsley, sent messages of congratulations for Matt - which were aired on Noel's HQ."