England team adopts Dave the cat after befriending him in Qatar

Hurt feelings, new felines: England players adopt ‘Dave’ the cat after befriending the stray at their Qatar training camp – and bring him back to UK after World Cup disappointment

  • Manchester City duo Kyle Walker and John Stones have adopted a Qatari cat
  • The pair befriended the furry animal at the Al Wakrah hotel base during the cup
  • Dave, the tabby cat, will spend four months in quarantine before he is homed
  •  It is unknown which of the England stars will be adopting the tabby on his arrival

Football may not be coming home this year but Dave the cat, the latest member of the England squad, certainly is.

While last night’s defeat against France meant the Three Lions would not be taking home the World Cup Trophy, they are not leaving Qatar completely empty handed – they will now have a feline friend in tow.

Defenders Kyle Walker and John Stones, who both played for Gareth Southgate’s squad in England’s final game, have decided to adopt a friendly, stray tabby cat they befriended at their Al Wakrah hotel base.

Walker had promised to take Dave back to England if they won the tournament but despite team’s heartbreaking 2-1 loss to France during the quarter finals, the cat will be jetting off overseas.

Football may not be coming home this year but Dave the cat (pictured) certainly is. Kyle Walker and John Stones decided to adopt a friendly, stray tabby cat they befriended at their Al Wakrah hotel base

The handsome cat, named Dave by Stones, is getting ready to move to the UK, as the disheartened England team fly home.

Dave was quickly adopted as the teams mascot, with the Manchester City duo being pictured with their furry friend most evenings.

In the buildup to the France game, Stones was asked about how Dave was.

He said: ‘Dave is fine. He had a little scrap with another cat the other night. I think they are fighting over territory and the food. But he’s doing well.

Broadcaster ITV said England’s 2-1 defeat to reigning champions France at the quarter-final stage was the most watched programme across all TV channels this year, with an average audience of 20.4 million viewers

‘Hopefully I can stick to my promise that he will come home with us if we were to win the World Cup. Dave’s fine, thank you for asking.’

Walker told the FA’s official media channel: ‘He was just there one day so we’ve just adopted him, me and Stonesy.

‘Dave is welcome to the table. Some people really don’t like the cat, but I love him.’

Although England is not going all the way to World Cup glory, the players decided they will keep their promise and rehome Dave.

Dave left Al Wakrah just two hours after the squad had departed and will first head to a local veterinary clinic

He left Al Wakrah just two hours after the squad had departed and will first head to a local veterinary clinic.

There he will have a blood test and receive vaccinations, spending four months in quarantine before heading to his new home.

A woman who had been tasked with taking Dave to the vet’s today told reporters: ‘He’s going back with the team. They’re still undecided as to who’s having him but he’s going back.’

Broadcaster ITV said England’s 2-1 defeat to reigning champions France at the quarter-final stage was the most watched programme across all TV channels this year, with an average audience of 20.4 million viewers. 

As the glum-looking Three Lions headed home from Qatar, young star Jude Bellingham told England fans to ‘stick with us’ in a final message.

The squad are expected to arrive back at Birmingham Airport at 6.30pm tonight.

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