FORMER Pompey star Jermaine Defoe was in tears today at the funeral of his ‘best friend Bradley Lowery, whose battle with cancer captured hearts around the world.
He was among thousands of people lining the streets of Blackhall in County Durham, ahead of the service at St Joseph’s Catholic Church, where the youngster was baptised six years ago.
A piper lead the horse-drawn carriage carrying his coffin through the village, which came to a halt to pay tribute to the little boy with the beaming smile.
Some released balloons as the cortege passed and a spontaneous round of applause broke out.
Mourners dressed in superhero costumes followed the funeral procession.
Defoe, now signed for Bournemouth, left training in Spain to attend.
Former Sunderland FC manager David Moyes was also among the congregation. Defoe struck up a remarkable friendship with Bradley after the little boy appeared as a mascot for his beloved Sunderland.