Raheem Sterling pays tribute to Crystal Palace youth player Damary Dawkins during Euro 2020 qualifier

Bonnie Christian

Raheem Sterling paid touching tribute during England's match against Czech Republic on Friday to a Crystal Palace youth player who died from leukaemia.

Damary Dawkins, 13, a member of Crystal Palace’s elite development squad, was diagnosed with very rare acute lymphoblastic leukaemia aged nine.

Manchester City and England star Sterling stepped in with pleas to find a stem cell donor on his social media accounts and Crystal Palace also ran a campaign, working with blood cancer charity DKMS. In December a donor was finally found in the US.

Damary died on Sunday after relapsing twice following a transplant.

Raheem Sterling's touching tribute at the Euro 2020 qualifier (REUTERS)

After Sterling's second goal in the Euro 2020 qualifying campaign on Friday he celebrated by lifting up his shirt, showing a shirt underneath that featured a picture of himself with Damary.

Asked about the tribute after the match, Sterling said: "Damary was a kid that I was trying to help. We thought we found a donor and sadly it didn't match.

"I thought that I would do something for his family to have a smile about really."

Star supporter: Raheem Sterling visiting Damary Dawkins (Graham Chadwick/Daily Mail)

England beat the Czech Republic team 5-0 at Wembley on Friday night with Sterling scoring a hat-trick.