England World Cup teammates befriend stray cat at hotel, give him a new home

England World Cup teammates befriend stray cat at hotel, give him a new home

For the past few weeks soccer fans around the world have been captivated by the FIFA World Cup. It’s always thrilling to root on your home country, even if it often ends with disappointment when they’re eliminated.

UK fans were left with that disappointment last weekend as England was eliminated after a loss in the quarter-finals — but it turns out, they didn’t go home empty-handed after all, as one sweet story reveals.

DOHA, QATAR – NOVEMBER 21: Starting line-up of England during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Group B match between England and IR Iran at Khalifa International Stadium on November 21, 2022 in Doha, Qatar. (Photo by VCG/VCG via Getty Images)

While staying in Qatar for the World Cup, the team found an unexpected new mascot. They were dining at their hotel on their first day of arrival when a stray cat came up to them.

They named the cat Dave, and after feeding him some food, the cat became attached. “Every night, he’s there sat waiting for his food,” teammate John Stones said.

Dave quickly became a fan favorite and an unofficial mascot for the team on their quest for World Cup glory.

Teammate Kyle Walker was asked about Dave in a press conference, and he confirmed that the team was looking into bringing the cat home with them.

“Hopefully I can stick to my promise where I said that he would come home with us if we was to win the World Cup,” Walker told reporters.

England didn’t end up winning the World Cup — but they still made good on their promise to adopt their new feline friend.

In a Facebook post, the Qatar Animal Welfare Society confirmed the news: “Yes, it’s official, Dave is going home.”

“He’s going back with the team. They’re still undecided as to who’s having him but he’s going back,” a source told reporters, according to Daily Mail.

DOHA, QATAR – DECEMBER 03: Dave, a local cat, is pictured at the team hotel on December 03, 2022 in Doha, Qatar. (Photo by Eddie Keogh – The FA/The FA via Getty Images)

Before his trip to his new home in the UK, Dave will have to wait four months of quarantine “as he prepares for his new life,” the welfare society wrote. He has received his vaccinations and in the care of a foster home.

Stones and Walker reportedly “adopted” the cat in Qatar, so it seems likely they will be the ones caring for Dave when he arrives in the UK.

“He was just there one day so we’ve just adopted him, me and Stonesy,” Walker said. “Dave is welcome to the table. Some people really don’t like the cat, but I love him.”

England may not have won the World Cup, but they didn’t go home empty handed! Thank you to the kind athletes who gave Dave a great new home! ⚽️❤️

We know Dave is going to be England’s biggest fan and new mascot! Please share this inspiring news!