Former footballer JOE THOMPSON, 35, is diagnosed with cancer for the third time

Friday, April 12, 2024
 – Former English footballer, Joe Thompson has revealed that he has been diagnosed with cancer for a third time.

The 35-year-old was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma in 2013 and recovered before the cancer returned four years later. He went on to recover a second time before calling time on his career in 2019.

'[It is] far from ideal and it's come back quite aggressive, so stage four,' he told BBC Radio Manchester.

'[The] only positive is it is the same cancer as what I've had previously, but the issue for me this time is its gone on to my lungs, so breathing is a problem, sleeping is difficult and even talking sometimes can be quite hard.

'Definitely, the fight is still inside, nothing changes, but actually facing it for the third time really hurts because you know what you are going to have to go through.'

Thompson made 203 appearances for Rochdale but only one in his final campaign with the side after sharing that he had 'pushed his body to the absolute limit.'

He was first diagnosed while playing for Tranmere. Thompson later signed for Bury and spent time on loan at Southport and Wrexham as he tried to build his match fitness following treatment.

He returned to Rochdale from Carlisle in 2016 but the disease soon returned, requiring extensive treatment.

He announced he was cancer-free in June 2017 and less than a year later scored the goal that kept Rochdale in League One, beating Charlton on the final day of the season.

'It's weighing up all the options and trying to understand what do you want to get out of life?' He added. 'Ultimately I want a quality of life where I can be like everybody else, play with my children, be as active as possible, and enjoy life," he continued.

'The problem with a third diagnosis is it's like the grim reaper, here I am again. Then you start to think of all the emotions.

'I'd be lying if I said there's not days where I doubt certain things, but I've always said I will never, ever give up, I'll just get beaten if it does get on top of me.'

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