Theo Walcott and wife Melanie announce birth of first child

Arsenal star Theo Walcott and his wife Melanie Slade have announced the arrival of their first child.

"So over the moon to announce the birth of our baby boy Finley born this morning.... It's amazing to be mummy & daddy! Love him so much x", Theo wrote on his Facebook wall.

Theo Walcott and Melanie Slade in 2013

Fans took over the post congratulating the pair, with one posting: "Congratulations hope he's good footballer like is dad."

The couple were childhood sweethearts and dated for nine years before Theo popped the question on New Year’s Eve 2011 at their home in Hertfordshire.

Theo and Melanie married 18 months later in a lavish ceremony at Castello di Vincigliata, near Florence in Italy last year.

Later that year in December Theo and Melanie revealed they were expecting their first child and said: "We are both very excited at such happy news just a few months after getting married".

Speaking exclusively to HELLO! Magazine, 25-year-old Theo said at the time of their wedding: "It's fantastic to be able to finally call Melanie my wife. Now we're excited to see what the future holds for us."

Melanie added that the best part of her day was walking down the aisle to her groom.

"That moment when I saw Theo waiting for me at the altar was so overwhelming", she said.

Theo Walcott and Melanie Slade were married in June 2013

"Your emotions are all over the place – you're so excited and euphoric because you're marrying this person who you love so much, but there are some nerves there too because it's such a big step."

Theo went on to say that marriage won’t change anything for the pair: "I don't think marriage will change our relationship – I hope not anyway, as it was already everything I could have wanted."

In 2013 the name Finley rose 31 places to land above Alexander and Joseph as the 21st most popular boys name.

Find out more about Melanie Walcott in her blog