By Chris Wright
Here’s one to warm thou cockles on this cold and frosty morn.
German second division side Union Berlin have extended the contract of midfielder Benjamin Köhler for a further year as a show of support as he continues to battle a rare type of stomach cancer.
Köhler was recently diagnosed with was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma earlier this week when doctors found a malignant tumour in his stomach.
“I’m going to fight it,” Köhler told the German press.
“It’s a massive blow for my family and I – first I’ve got to process it, but then I’m going to fight it with everything I’ve got.
“We’ll be seeing each other again for sure.”
The 34-year-old is now due to step down from active duty while he undergoes treatment, but Union – a club famed for their independent and family-orientated leanings – have extended his contract by a further year to 2016 as a signal of their confidence that Kohler will be able to beat his illness and return to their fold in the not-so-distant future.
“Benny is and remains an important part of our team,” said manager Norbert Duewel in a club statement.
“His illness came as a shock for all of us, but we are all certain that Benny will again wear the Union shirt. He is a fighter on and off the pitch.”
Amazing stuff. Such a simple gesture, but incredibly powerful with it.