A Deepings youngster has described the ‘unbelievable’ moment in which he walked onto the Wembley pitch in front of thousands of fans hand-in-hand with a Manchester United player during the FA Cup final.
Callum Jesson was one of a lucky handful picked to walk out during the FA Cup Final last Saturday, in which Manchester United beat Crystal Palace 2-1 to lift the trophy.
The football mad youngster, from Deeping St James, went onto the pitch hand-in-hand with Marouane Fellaini but all the midfielder had time to say to Callum was a shy hello - and Callum wished him luck in return.
Callum turned 10 the day after the match and had hoped to walk out with Man United’s number 10 – its captain Wayne Rooney – but he was delighted to be there nonetheless.
He said: “The whole time I was on the pitch I couldn’t really believe it and I still can’t even now. It was just amazing.”
Ahead of walking out, Callum spotted the Duke of Cambridge Prince William in the tunnel and got the chance to learn the National Anthem with X Factor star CeCe Frey.
He also met FA Cup legends David James and John Barnes.
Callum won the chance to be there after his grandmother Janice Jesson, of Bourne, entered a national newspaper competition run in conjunction with tournament sponsor Emirates.
Callum, a Market Deeping Community Primary School pupil, said: “When I got home I just said a massive thank you to her. It was a great day - the best birthday ever.”
Callum was given an Emirates kit, a cap and a programme, which he had signed by David James and John Barnes, as a memento of a special day.
Proud dad Mark was watching from the stands and had no idea who his son would be clutching the hand of. Mum Dawn and sister Zara, seven, were watching at home in Cowslip Drive.
Mark, a lifelong supporter, said: “I could have picked a couple of players I would rather he walked out with but at the end of the day I was just excited he was there.”
Mark praised John Barnes and David James for putting the young mascots at ease.
And to top his amazing weekend, when he returned on Sunday, Callum celebrated his birthday at Tallington Lakes with school friends.