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Prince William interrupts Easter break to share heartwarming message

The Prince of Wales is a huge Aston Villa fan

Prince William at Euro 2022 final
Danielle Stacey
Online Royal CorrespondentLondon
Updated: 10 April 2024
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The Prince of Wales interrupted his Easter holiday with his children to share a very special tribute on Wednesday.

Football fan Prince William, 41, penned a heartwarming message to England and Aston Villa forward Rachel Daly, as she announced her retirement from international football.

In a personal message on X, formerly known as Twitter, William wrote: "Thank you for so many unforgettable performances with @Lionesses @RachelDaly3. Plenty more goals for Villa now! W."

It was in response to Rachel's announcement about hanging up her boots for England. "Don't cry because it’s over, smile because it happened," she wrote alongside her statement.

The footballer, 32, who has 84 caps, was part of the Lionesses team that won the Euros 2022. Her announcement comes the day after she played in England's Euro 2025 qualifying win over the Republic of Ireland.

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The Lionesses manager, Sarina Wiegman, said of Rachel: "It has been a privilege to work with her. I have never worked with a player so versatile, always with a smile on her face, bringing energy and trying her best for the team."

William, who is the President of the FA, has previously met the England star and handed out the winners' medals to the team at the Euro 2022 final against Germany.

Rachel Daly © Getty
Rachel played in England's Euro 2025 qualifier

The Prince also surprised the Lionesses at their training ground at St George's Park in June 2023, ahead of the Women's World Cup, when he presented head coach Sarina with her CBE in front of the squad.

The father-of-three was criticised for not travelling to the tournament in Australia and New Zealand last summer when the England team reached the final against Spain.

However, William and his daughter, Princess Charlotte, did appear in a video message to send a good luck message to the Lionesses. Watch it below...

WATCH: Prince William and Princess Charlotte share good luck message for the Lionesses

It was understood at the time that the Prince made the decision not to go because a trip to Australia would involve flying across the world for a very short period of time.

Prince William congratulating Rachel Daly at the Euro 2022 final© Getty
Prince William congratulating Rachel Daly at the Euro 2022 final

William is a renowned Aston Villa fan and has attended games off-duty through the years. He explained to Gary Lineker in 2015 why he follows the West Midlands team, despite being born in London.

He revealed: "A long time ago at school I got into football big time. I was looking around for clubs. All my friends at school were either Man United fans or Chelsea fans and I didn't want to follow the run-of-the-mill teams. I wanted to have a team that was more mid-table that could give me more emotional rollercoaster moments."

The Prince and Princess of Wales have spent the Easter school break privately with their three children following Kate's announcement about her shock cancer diagnosis. In a video message released on 22 March, she confirmed she is undergoing preventative chemotherapy for an undisclosed cancer, which was discovered in post-operative tests following her major abdominal surgery in January.

Kensington Palace said at the time of the announcement: "The Prince will continue to balance supporting his wife and family and maintaining his official duties as he has done since the start of the year."

LISTEN: Inside King Charles' private lunch with Princess Kate


Princess Kate wearing black and white polka dots and a hat

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