Football fanatic Altaf Bharde is so certain that his son will play for England he has put a bet on it even though the youngster can barely walk.

Mr Bharde, 28, of Springwood Crescent, Edgware, has staked £50 with bookmakers William Hill at odds of 10,000-1 that one-year-old Riyad will play for England by the time he is 21.

"I am a big fan of football and Manchester United in particular and want my son to play professional football. I have bought lots of balls for him of different sizes.

"He can only just walk but he is amazing with the ball," explained Mr Bharde.

Originally from Tanzania, Mr Bharde came to England just over ten years ago and became hooked on football during Euro 96.

"I have been to many England friendlies and to a few Man United games but the big tournament was Euro '96 and that was when I said that if I ever had a son, this is what he will do."

Mr Bharde confesses to a lack of footballing pedigree within his family but is nonetheless still confident of his son's progress.

"I am more than confident that Riyad can do it and I will do anything I can to make this dream happen. We are going to give him full support including coaching or football schools," Mr Bharde added.

Graham Sharpe, spokesman for William Hill, said: "In terms of the subject matter it is a very popular bet these days but I am a little concerned that I have set up a small financial time bomb.

"Nobody backed David Beckham when he was two years old but now in a few years time we may find that one of these lads might play for England. Good luck to him. I am sure they will be putting a football in the pram as well as a rattle."