A football captain had good reason for an early substitution in his latest game - after his partner went into labour!
Daryll Donnelly led out his Jarrow Roofing team as usual ahead of their Northern League Division One clash with Bishop Auckland on Tuesday night.
But his game came to an early end when his new baby daughter decided it was time to make her entrance to the world.
Centre-half Daryll, 27, had only been on the pitch for 30 minutes when the Roofers’ coaching team started shouting at him to get off the field after taking a call from his partner Jasmine Florence.
Already parents to three-year-old Charlie, 26-year-old Jasmine rang for Daryll after going into labour.
He rushed home and took his partner to the maternity ward of South Tyneside District Hospital where Jasmine gave birth to baby Lyla, weighing 8lb 15oz, in the early hours of Wednesday.
She told me not to go to football but being a lad I went.Daryll Donnelly
Daryll, a sports coach, said: “We had been down to the hospital earlier that day as she had started getting pains.
“She was in the beginning of labour but wasn’t ready to be taken in.
“She told me not to go to football but being a lad I went.
“I had started playing then my manager started shouting me off the pitch, everything happened from there.
“In my head when I was on the way to the game, I just kept telling myself I shouldn’t have done this. But Jas was fine about it.
“I got home, took her to the hospital. Lyla was born at 5.55am.”
Daryll, from Jarrow, added: “Both mother and baby are doing good. Lyla is being cared for in the special care baby unit, but everything is fine.
“Charlie knows he was going to have a sister so I’m hoping to be able to take him up soon to see her, as he wants to give her lots of kisses.”