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The purpose Kyle Walker pays tribute to Annie Kilner and their children

The stars appear to be aligning for Gareth Southgate‘s England at Euro 2024

Last minute wonder goals, triumphant penalty shootouts and dubious penalty decisions have helped Southgate’s Three Lions progress to the final of this tournament, despite their football being at best cautious, at worst poor. 

But if winning has been a constant theme for England, so too has vice-captain Kyle Walker‘s pre-match ritual, evident at all five of their games before Wednesday’s semi-final triumph. 

And it was evident again as Walker prepared to earn his 89th England cap in a 2-1 victory against the Netherlands, a victory that puts his team in the history books for reaching their first final on foreign soil. 

The Manchester City full-back, 34, has repeatedly demonstrated that his children with wife Annie Kilner, 30, are his main priority by making an ‘R’ symbol – the first letter of their four children’s names – with his fingers during every match. 

if winning has been a constant theme for England, so too has vice-captain Kyle Walker's pre-match ritual, evident at all five of their games before Wednesday's semi-final triumph

if winning has been a constant theme for England, so too has vice-captain Kyle Walker’s pre-match ritual, evident at all five of their games before Wednesday’s semi-final triumph

The full-back has repeatedly demonstrated that his children with wife Annie Kilner are his main priority by making an 'R' symbol - the first letter of their four children's names - with his fingers

The full-back has repeatedly demonstrated that his children with wife Annie Kilner are his main priority by making an ‘R’ symbol – the first letter of their four children’s names – with his fingers

Explaining the reason behind his gesture, a source told MailOnline: ‘He always make sure he has a nod to his family who are travelling to support him and the squad all the way from home for each game. 

‘The boys follow his every move and are so proud of their Dad. It drives him on knowing they are there.’

Walker and Kilner are parents to sons Roman, 11, Riaan, seven, Reign, five and newborn Rezon, who the couple welcomed in April. 

The couple are attempting to salvage their marriage after Walker admitted to fathering a daughter, now ten-months old, with influencer Lauryn Goodman, 33, out of wedlock

Walker is also the father of Goodman’s four-year old son Kairo after she fell pregnant  in 2020, while he was briefly separated from Kilner. 

The source added: ‘Annie has been an incredible mother and family woman, despite everything, and he knows this and wants to make sure they all know that he sees them and appreciates them.

‘He misses the boys terribly when at England camp but is incredibly proud to be a part of such a strong squad who now look like they might actually bring the trophy home.’ 

The decorated footballer, who is playing in his fifth consecutive tournament with England, is also father to son Kairo, four, and a ten-month old daughter with influencer Lauryn Goodman. 

'He always make sure he has a nod to his family who are travelling to support him and the squad all the way from home for each game,' a source told MailOnline

‘He always make sure he has a nod to his family who are travelling to support him and the squad all the way from home for each game,’ a source told MailOnline  

Walker made his way into the stands to be with his family after Wednesday evening's 2-1 win over the Netherlands in Dortmund

Walker made his way into the stands to be with his family after Wednesday evening’s 2-1 win over the Netherlands in Dortmund 

Kilner gave birth to the couple’s fourth child in April, with Walker by her side during the birth. 

The past few months have been a rollercoaster after she discovered he had fathered a second child with Goodman. The footballer subsequently moved out of their Cheshire home in January.

The influencer has been accused of purposefully fueling a public spat with Walker after he reportedly missed his son Kairo’s fourth birthday.

England’s quarter-final victory over Switzerland in Düsseldorf on July 6 was overshadowed by Goodman’s latest social media activity as Kilner and her children watched from the stands. 

Southgate’s men matched on to their third semi-final under his management after beating a lively Switzerland side on penalties.

But Kilner looked less than impressed after Walker, having earned his 88th cap for England, reunited with her after the game at Düsseldorf’s Merkur Spiel-Arena.

Sources have since claimed her mood was soured after Goodman shared photos of her two children wearing ‘Daddy’ England shirts.

An insider told MailOnline: ‘Insiders at the England camp say they are fed up with the off pitch distraction manufactured by Lauryn.’

The 34-year-old makes an 'R' symbol with his hands - the beginning letter of his and Kilner's children

The 34-year-old makes an ‘R’ symbol with his hands – the beginning letter of his and Kilner’s children

The couple had a frosty reunion in the stands after England's epic penalties win against Switzerland in the quarter-finals

The couple had a frosty reunion in the stands after England’s epic penalties win against Switzerland in the quarter-finals

Lauryn Goodman, the ex-mistress of  Walker, has been sharing constant social media content surrounding the competition and posted a snap of their two children wearing 'Daddy' England shirts

Lauryn Goodman, the ex-mistress of  Walker, has been sharing constant social media content surrounding the competition and posted a snap of their two children wearing ‘Daddy’ England shirts

Sources claim the England camp are fed up with Goodman's constant off-pitch distractions (pictured: Walker and Kilner after England's quarter-final victory on July 6)

Sources claim the England camp are fed up with Goodman’s constant off-pitch distractions (pictured: Walker and Kilner after England’s quarter-final victory on July 6)

‘They know Annie and Kyle have tried to deal with the situation privately and discreetly for the sake of all the children involved but she continues to pull stunts like drumming up attention around the fact she is going to the Euros.

‘This is something they have had to put up with for the past four years.

‘Kyle is desperate to protect Annie and their boys, whatever happens between them as a couple in the future they both agree this is a priority.

‘And a big part of that is protecting them from the media speculation and circus around the situation.’