The wife of former Manchester United and England football star Rio Ferdinand is redefining the role of stepmum after the family swelled to six with the birth of their first baby together.

Kate Ferdinand became stepmother to her husband's three children and the couple welcomed Cree to the group in December 2020.

She is now producing a new podcast, Blended, highlights stepfamilies.

Kate was in her late 20s when she met Rio, 43, and became stepmum to his three eldest children Lorenz, who is now 15, Tate, 13, and Tia, 10.

Their mum, Rio’s late wife Rebecca Ellison, died from breast cancer in 2015 at the age of 34.

As an only child brought up by her mum after her parents divorced, Kate hadn’t experienced looking after children or siblings before, the Daily Mirror reports.

She said: “Cree has brought us all closer than ever. It’s beautiful to see. He’s so cheeky – and really loud!

“Everyone in our family is quite loud, so he definitely tries to compete with us all, and he’s so funny. He says ‘hiya’ to everyone we pass while walking down the street.

"I’m just so grateful that I’ve got a lovely big family I wouldn’t have unless I was in this situation. The biggest high is love. I’m so lucky.”

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After Kate and Rio began dating in 2017, the Essex-born star quit TOWIE to focus on family life and help bring up three grieving children.

When she married Rio in Turkey two years later, Tia acted as Kate’s maid of honour, while Lorenz and Tate walked her half way down the aisle.

Kate said: “Of course, we are one family and they call me ‘Mummy Kate’ now. We talk most evenings before bed, and we all have a bit of a debrief about our day. I love this age and love that we can get into big family debates about different topics.

“Tia is like Cree’s second mum. She’s always around the house to entertain him. And he loves football. The boys are always playing footie with him in the house so he’s kicking a ball constantly. He is the boss and thinks he is a teenager and isn’t even two.”

Kate previously revealed how she “cried every day for a year” after she first moved in with Rio, feeling heartbroken for him and his children while feeling the pressure of her role.

Rio reassured her there was no instruction manual for being a stepmother and her journey has been the motivation behind Kate’s podcast.

She said: “I just hoped it would resonate with anyone who needed a little bit of help. I struggled at the beginning of my journey, and even to this day, there’s certain things that I’m hesitant to talk about or I don’t know where to turn, and there seems to be a lot of people who feel the same."

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