Search icon


07th Jul 2018

Fabian Delph thanks Jordan Henderson after the birth of his child

Henderson inadvertently helped speed things along

Simon Lloyd

It’s been quite a few days for Fabian Delph

After appearing in England’s final World Cup group game against Belgium, the Manchester City midfielder was allowed to travel home for the birth of his third child.

While home, he watched his international teammates squeeze past Colombia on a penalty shootout in the last-16 stage. His wife gave birth to a healthy baby girl after this, allowing him to return to Russia and appear as a substitute in the quarter-final win over Sweden.

Speaking to the BBC’s Gabby Logan after the game in Samara, Delph revealed that the drama of the shootout win over Colombia played its part in inducing the birth of his daughter. He thanked manager Gareth Southgate for allowing him to make the trip home, also singling out Jordan Henderson, who was responsible for England’s only failed penalty, for speeding up the newborn’s arrival.

“It is hard to put into words,” Delph admitted. “It has been an amazing week. Thanks to Gareth for letting me go home for the birth of my third child. It was hard for me. I think it was the penalties that brought on the labour. I’ve got Hendo to thank for that. To go to the next round is amazing.”

England defeated Sweden 2-0 to reach their first World Cup semi-final in nearly three decades. Headers from Harry Maguire and Dele Alli either side of half-time – and another brilliant display from Jordan Pickford – were enough for them to progress.

Delph and his international teammates now face a semi-final in Moscow with either the host nation Russia or Croatia, who meet in the final quarter-final. Should they win that, they’ll return to the Russian capital’s Luzhniki Stadium to play their first World Cup final since 1966.