Rochdale’s saviour Joe Thompson on surviving cancer: ‘Karma comes around’

21 October 2018 02:13
The winger’s goal that kept Rochdale in League One capped an extraordinary comeback from a recurrence of Hodgkin lymphoma“Have you ever envisaged paradise?” asks Joe Thompson. He imagined it as a walk along a beach towards sunset, listening to the waves with clarity of thought and no distractions. He experienced it at the Crown Oil Arena on the final day of last season, shortly after preserving Rochdale’s League One status with the winner against Charlton and surrounded by more than 5,000 jubilant supporters. Less than a year earlier the 29-year-old had undergone chemotherapy plus a stem cell transplant to survive cancer for a second time. Saved, and now the saviour; he broke from the celebrations on 5 May to absorb a truly extraordinary comeback.“Everything went silent, like white noise, and time stood still for me,” the winger recalls of the realisation that his goal, combined with Oldham’s failure to beat already relegated Northampton Town, had kept Rochdale afloat against the odds. “It lasted 10 to 15 seconds and in that time I was just flying. It was the beauty of football, the power it can have and why everyone loves it for those magical moments. Then I remember there was just noise. I’d never heard noise like it at the Crown Oil Arena. People who lived a mile up the road heard it and said it was incredible. Related: Rochdale pull off great escape, Barnet drop out of Football League Related: Rochdale record-breaker starts school, makes debut and is man of the match Continue readingreadfullarticle

Source: TheGuardian