Thu | Jul 29, 2021

Butler beaming as Bailey enters fatherhood

Published:Monday | June 15, 2020 | 12:21 AMLivingston Scott/Gleaner Writer

Craig Butler, the adoptive father and agent of national footballer Leon Bailey, is overjoyed that the player is now a father himself. Bailey’s girlfriend, Stephanie Hope, gave birth to a boy in Germany yesterday, and Butler says that the next generation of his Phoenix All Stars Football Academy is now here.

“I am very happy,” he said. “It makes me very proud of Leon. Everybody is proud, happy, and elated and jumping for joy. I think he has reached a huge milestone in his life and for the family. We didn’t sleep last night (Saturday), and we woke up excited.

“We have grown, and now the next generation of Phoenix is on its way. He (the baby) is the first of the next generation. He’s ready, training soon start.”

However, Butler, refused to reveal the name of the child, saying that he would reserve that right for the parents.

“I think that Leon and the mother of the child should really announce that,” he said. “I want them to announce it to the world, not me. That, Leon will have to tell you. People want to have their own announcement, and I would be stealing the man’s show when I do that. I don’t want to do that. I want him to announce his youth. If it was me, I would want to announce my son.”

However, he believes that the arrival of Bailey’s first born will be a life-changing experience for the player.

“I think that he is very mature and responsible now, and he is only 22,” Butler said. “A lot of people see him and think he is a big man, but he is only 22 years old and extremely mature and responsible.

“But having a son will always change your perspective on life. No matter what you do, once you have your first kid, your perspective changes, and I think it will help him to grow even more.”

Bailey, who has had an injury-plagued season, missed the last two games for his German Bundesliga club, Bayer Leverkusen, including their 1-1 draw with Schalke. He has scored five goals and has had two assists in 19 matches this season.