Bradley Lowery leading out England at Wembley is everything that’s good about football

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There was scarcely a football fan unmoved as Bradley Lowery led England on to the pitch to face Lithuania alongside his “best friend” Jermain Defoe.

The five-year-old Sunderland fan, who has neuroblastoma, has struck up a friendship with the striker, with Defoe and other Black Cats stars visiting him in hospital when he was undergoing life-prolonging treatment.

And when he led the Three Lions out for their World Cup qualifier alongside a recalled Defoe, more than a few fans found they suddenly had something in their eye.

England's Jermain Defoe with mascot Bradley Lowery
(Adam Davy/PA)

The moment was even more special as England’s new captain Joe Hart stood aside to allow Bradley and Defoe to go on to the pitch first.

And it was a moment for football fans to cherish.

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Somewhat inevitably, it was Defoe who opened the scoring for England too.

Just one problem – the noise was apparently a bit too much.

England's Jermain Defoe with mascot Bradley Lowery
(Adam Davy/PA)

The event was all the more special as, when Bradley was first told he would be a mascot for the game, the idea that Defoe would have been in the team was pretty far fetched.

Before the game, Bradley’s mum Gemma, from Blackhall, County Durham, told Radio 5 Live: “To find out Jermain is going to be there as well just totally topped it off for him.”

She added: “At the very beginning it was just amazing. It was his dream come true, his hero, Jermain. Now he just calls him his best friend – it’s just normal for him.”

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