An eight-year-old Everton fan who led his team out on to the pitch after an invite from one of his heroes has said it felt like he was “dreaming”.
Harry’s mum wrote to England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford and told him about her son’s treatment for a brain tumour as well as the sudden death of his dad.
He was invited to Everton’s training ground where Pickford asked him to be a mascot for Monday’s game against Spurs.
Before the match at Goodison Park Harry was “nervous but super-excited”.
Image caption, Before the match at Goodison Park Harry was “nervous but super-excited”
Aged five, Harry became critically ill and was diagnosed with pneumonia and sepsis.
He was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool where an 8cm brain tumour as discovered.
Doctors were able to remove 90% of the tumour but the remaining part was embedded deeply into his central nervous system.
The tumour became active again nine months later and Harry had radiotherapy.
As Harry’s treatment was nearing completion his father died unexpectedly.
Image source, Family handout
Image caption, Harry has endured treatment for a brain tumour
Harry’s mum Laura wrote to Pickford to share her son’s story, telling him Harry was “a proper Evertonian who loved playing in goal”.
Before the match Harry visited the home dressing room and told his heroes: “You can’t let Harry Kane score, you got to tackle them and you got to score.”
Image source, Everton FC
Image caption, Before the match Harry visited the home dressing room
While Kane did score, Michael Keane equalised in the 90th minute to salvage a 1-1 draw for the Toffeemen, who are involved in a relegation battle.
Speaking from the pitch after the game Harry said: “It’s been a very good day – I loved it!”
Pickford said: “People go through tough times in their life and it’s about a community making people happy and hopefully we’ve done that.
“It just shows what we can do to help put smiles on people’s faces.”
Laura added: “I can’t put into words how hard the last couple of years have been for him and this has just been the biggest treat.
“It’s been absolutely amazing, mind-blowing.”