Little Mix star Jade Thirlwall paid a special visit to Mariners Park on Friday as she wished South Shields FC all the best for next month’s Wembley trip.

The singer, from South Shields, was sporting the club’s new home shirt, which will be worn for the first time by the team at the FA Vase final on Sunday, May 21.

Prior arrangements mean she may not be able to get to the national stadium to cheer on the Mariners on the big day, but there is no doubting where her allegiances lie.

Jade said: “If I’m not able to make it to Wembley, I will be supporting the team from wherever I am.

“It’s fantastic that South Shields FC are getting more support than ever.

“I’ve loved football since I was little, and I usually watch Newcastle when I’m home.

“I always root for my hometown, though, and I’m so pleased Shields are doing well.

“It’s amazing that a team from a small town like South Shields is going to get the opportunity to play at Wembley.”

Jade Thirlwall SSFC 2Little Mix have recently returned to the UK from a tour in America.

The worldwide stars spent two-and-a-half-months wowing crowds as part of pop superstar Ariana Grande’s Dangerous Woman world tour.

However, there was no getting away from the success of the Mariners – even thousands of miles away.

Jade added: “I’ve always known about the club.

“Even when I’m away in America, I always hear about how well they’re doing because everyone seems to be talking about Shields on Twitter.

“I just hope that it gets bigger and bigger for them and they get all the success they deserve.”

Jade met with club officials and player Barrie Smith on her visit to Mariners Park, and is backing them all the way to lift the trophy next month.

Jade Thirlwall SSFC 3She added: “I’d just like to wish them all the best of luck for Wembley. We will all be rooting for them.

“Whether they win or not, it’s an amazing opportunity for them to go there.”

As well as the FA Vase final, Shields will compete in the finals of the Durham Challenge Cup and Northern League Cup next month.

They have already secured the Northern League Division One title, and will lift the trophy after today’s final game of the league season, at Guisborough Town, before returning to Mariners Park to celebrate the success with supporters.