Manchester United footballer's grandparents visit all dragon monoliths to mark his inclusion in Wales' Euro 2020 squad

David and Jackie Hough's first stop was Dylan's monolith in Plas Mawr, Conwy


The proud grandparents of a Wales international footballer from North Wales have visited each of the 26 Euro 2020 dragon monoliths across the country.

The monoliths were installed at historical sites across Wales prior to the Euro 2020 squad announcement which came on Sunday, May 30.

Each of the 26 players named in the squad were assigned a monolith at a historical site near their hometowns.

For 20-year-old Dylan Levitt, who has nine caps for the national team, his monolith was placed at Plas Mawr in Conwy, roughly 36 miles from his home town of Flint.

Levitt was something of a surprise inclusion in the young squad, which boasted an average age of just 25 years, six months and 26 days - one of the youngest in the tournament.

David and Jackie visited all 26 monoliths. The pair can be seen by their grandson's monument in the top left 

When his family found out that he had been selected by Robert Page for Wales' only second major tournament in 63 years they were, unsurprisingly, very proud.

But due to the pandemic, they were not able to watch the Manchester United youngster play in person and like most Wales fans, they had to content themselves with watching the games at home instead.

Dylan's grandparents, however, wanted to immerse themselves in the competition in which their grandchild would be playing a part and as a result embarked on a mission across the country to visit the monolith of each of the 26 players named in the Euro 2020 squad.

Dylan's mother, Vikki, could not join her parents, David and Jackie Hough, on their mission because of work, but said that whole family were captivated by the prospect of seeing the former Flint High School pupil play in a major tournament.

David and Jackie embarked on a mission to visit all 26 of the monoliths after finding out that their grandson had been named in the Euro 2020 squad 

She said: "It came as a bit of a shock when Dylan was announced in the squad. We were just taking it day-by-day in the run-up and we were trying not to pin our hopes on it too much.

"He was on loan in Croatia last season and had the greatest time there, but we had no idea what to expect, even though he'd had a few caps in the run-up to the tournament.

"When he called me to tell me the news, I was overwhelmed. He just said 'I'm in, Mum' and we were all overjoyed - my mum shed a tear."

Ever since that day, Dylan and Jackie, both 72-years-old, have been travelling across the country to visit every monolith to celebrate their grandson's success.

David and Jackie stayed overnight in hotels to tick off each site 

Vikki said that the pair have driven up and down the country, staying in hotels along the way to make sure they could visit several sites in single trips.

"It's taken them about a month to do them all," Vikki said. "They've always been Wales fans, but it meant a bit more to them this time with Dylan being named in the squad.

"They started off with Dylan's monolith in Plas Mawr, Conwy and then decided to do them all to mark the occasion.

"We were all gutted we couldn't go to the actual tournament, so this was almost the next best thing for them in a way."

Dylan made his only appearance of the tournament when he came on for the final few minutes of the group game against Italy.

Seeing him warm-up on the touch line and coming onto the field was "nervous, stressful and nail-biting", said Vikki.

"My Mum and I were at the last Euros in France and then, five years on, there we were cheering Dylan on in the same tournament against Italy of all teams.

"We're a massive football family and it means so much to all of us. When he came on, we were ecstatic - my mum had to leave the room just before because she was so emotional, but she came back by the time he was on.

"We were all on pins watching him. He's a very young player and still quite slight, so to see him coming up against these big Italian players was quite daunting.

"After the game, I had a little cry because it was so overwhelming. I'm not an overly-emotional person, but to see my little boy on that stage was amazing - a magnificent achievement."

The team exited the tournament at the first round of the knockout stages after losing to eventual semi-finalists Denmark.

Vikki says that her son was "deflated" afterwards, but also "so proud to have pulled on the shirt" at the tournament.

She added: "To be in and around these senior places has been immense for him. He's learned so much from them and they really are role models for him on and off the pitch.

"He was so proud to be involved and we are all equally proud of him and of what he's accomplished."

Comments