Kieron Dyer has vowed to make the most of his second chance in memory of the person who saved his life.
The 43-year-old former England midfielder is in need of a liver transplant after being diagnosed with primary sclerosing cholangitis, a condition that scars the bile ducts and eventually causes severe damage.
Dyer is now awaiting a phone call from the donor team at Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge to let him know that a suitable organ has become available, but he is fully aware of what that would mean.
He told the Mail on Sunday: “I am aware that I depend on someone else’s misfortune to give me the chance to live a long and happy life. My greatest hope is that whatever liver I get, I make that person proud.
“They encourage you to get in touch with your donor’s family after your operation and that’s something I fully intend to do.
“It would comfort me, I think, if I was in the situation of a family who had lost a loved one. They would have lost someone they cherished and loved, but through their generosity they gave someone else the chance of a long life.
“I hope I will earn their inheritance. I wouldn’t want to spoil that. I know how valuable a second chance would be.
Dyer, whose playing career has taken him to Ipswich, Newcastle, West Ham, QPR and Middlesbrough, was diagnosed with liver disease in 2002 and CSP was detected during a routine examination, although it was didn’t expect he would need a transplant for a long time. later in life.
However, his situation became more pressing and he had to put his coaching career on hold.
He freely admits he was scared by the news, but has since found the strength to anticipate what lies ahead after facing the fears of his family and friends.
Dyer said, “I don’t put on bravado, but you have to find that inner strength, not just for yourself, but for them. They are worried, but I am not worried.
“I’m looking forward to it in a way. I’m looking forward to being a whole new me and doing things better and faster because I’m still competitive.