Bradley Lowery has 'amazing' Wembley experience with his best friend Jermain Defoe

Credit: Bradley Lowerys Fight

A terminally ill five-year-old boy whose battle with a rare childhood cancer has touched the football world, led out the England team at Wembley with his "best friend" Jermain Defoe.

Bradley Lowery was picked last month to be a mascot for the World Cup qualifier against Lithuania.

Bradley said he had an amazing day at Wembley with Jermain Defoe. Credit: PA

The Sunderland striker made it back into the England squad for the first time in four years meaning Bradley could walk onto the pitch with his hero on Sunday.

The Sunderland fan, who has neuroblastoma, struck up a friendship with the striker when Defoe visited him in hospital in Newcastle.

Bradley gave the Sunderland striker a cuddle before the game began. Credit: PA

A photo of Bradley falling asleep cuddling Defoe during the visit was widely shared on social media.

England captain Joe Hart placed Defoe at the front of the team so Bradley could lead the team onto the pitch.

As they walked onto the pitch, Bradley placed his hands over his ears to drown out the loud cheers of the crowd who welcomed the teams.

Before leaving the tunnel, Defoe bent down and cuddled his young fan - a sign of the close bond the two have developed in recent months.

Bradley placed his hands over his ears to drown out the loud cheers of the crowd. Credit: PA

The striker, who ended up scoring a goal for England said leading the team out with Bradley was "special".

"I had to keep my emotions in the beginning, obviously, little Brads was with me. You can imagine how I felt leading the team out with Bradley," he said.

"It was special. I obviously did it at the club as well, but just to be back and playing with the lads is a great feeling," said Defoe.

The football icon also described walking out onto the pitch with his friend Bradley as "perfect" in a tweet.

Lynn Murphy, the campaign manager for Bradley Lowery's Fight, said Bradley "loved every minute of it".

She added: "When he came off the pitch he was over the moon, and when Jermain scored that really topped the day off.

"After the match he got to spend time with Jermain for a bit longer and said 'I've had an amazing day, it's been fabulous'. Those were his words."

Bradley on the pitch at Wembley with Jermain Defoe his hero and friend. Credit: AP

Last December, his family were left devastated after being told that his cancer is terminal.

They have raised money to pay for a pioneering course of treatment from America, which Bradley is receiving at Newcastle's RVI.

Bradley's mother Gemma Lowery is in the process of setting up another charity to help other children affected by life-threatening illness.