A “FOOTBALL mad” new dad turned out for his team’s away-day derby clash hours after his partner gave birth to his daughter.
Dean Hughes, of Ffordd Llewelyn, Flint, had been supporting his girlfriend Della Diamond through labour for more than 24 hours.
He then turned out for Saltney Town’s Wednesday night trip to Penyffordd, where he also scored the second goal.
Dean, 32, said: “My partner had been in labour all night and hadn’t had much sleep.
“My daughter was born about 11.10am and I stayed with them until 4.10pm when lots of visitors turned up.
“I’m mad for football and if I could play five times a week I would.
“Della is very understanding about my football and she said ‘go and play’.”
Dean said his team had been unfortunate with injuries and he did not want to let his team mates down by not turning up.
“Obviously if there had been any kind of problems I would have missed it,” he said.
“But I wanted to play and wanted to win and when I scored I just put my arms in the air while the rest of the lads were going crazy.”
His best friend and team mate, Mark Williams, said the players were stunned and “could not believe it” when he turned up to the game.
Marc Edwards, friend and club secretary, said: “We couldn’t believe it when he turned up to the game.
“He told us ‘she’s had the baby’ and that he’d had no sleep.
“He said she just said because he loves his football he should go and play.
“He played absolutely fantastic and scored the second goal.”
He added: “He shot straight off after the game and he text me for the first time ever to say he couldn’t make Thursday night’s training.”
Remarkably, Dean failed to pick up man of the match award in the Welsh National League Premier Division tie, which Saltney Town went on to win 3-0.