Joe Thompson Beats Cancer Twice, Keeps Rochdale Up With MOTM Performance And Goal
Joe Thompson's goal and man of the match performance in a 1-0 victory against Charlton Athletic helped Rochdale secure a place in the League One for another season.
Back in 2013, when the 29-year-old played for Tranmere Rovers, he was diagnosed with nodular sclerosis Hodgkin lymphoma, which is a rare form of cancer. He had to undergo chemotherapy as treatment and take time out from playing football.
He beat the cancer and went into remission, however, in March of last year, back at his boyhood club Rochdale, Thompson revealed via Rochdale's official website that the cancer had returned.
Thompson, then, refusing to lie down, beat the cancer for a second time, before helping his side overcome a huge deficit. What a guy.
Rochdale midfielder Joe Thompson has twice recovered from cancer and he's just scored a goal that could deep Dale in League One. The definition of hero.- Benjamin Wills (@_BenWills) May 5, 2018
The much-loved midfielder has played almost 200 games for Lancashire side and has a deep connection with the fanbase. This was evident out on the pitch on Saturday, as his superb performance and neat goal saw the Dale beat the London side.
And it also showed in his post-match press conference. Speaking to Sky Sports he said that "It's been a hard, hard twelve months." And said that he is "over the moon" with the result which sees Rochdale stay in the League One by the skin of their teeth.
It certainly meant a lot of Rochdale supporters, as well, who, after a nail-biting few minutes waiting on the result between Oldham Athletic and Northampton to conclude, discovered that the Latics could not get the late goal that would save them. The finished 2-2 and Rochdale survived.
There were absolute scenes at the Spotland Stadium after the game. The fans ran onto the pitch to celebrate with the players.
The Rochdale manager Keith Hill said in his post-match press-conference that he would never normally celebrate surviving relegation, but the manner in which Rochdale have done it this year it is reason to smile.