Wolverhampton Wanderers and Super eagles of Nigeria goalkeeper Carl Ikeme diagnosed with acute leukaemia.
Ikeme returned abnormal blood tests during the players pre-season testing and further tests revealed he is suffering from acute leukaemia.
The 31 year old will now start an immediate course of chemotherapy as he begins a lengthy battle against the disease.
Wolverhampton managing director Laurie Dalrymple in a statement said, “It would be an understatement to say that everyone at Wolves has been shocked and saddened to hear the news of Carl’s diagnosis, that relates to both players and staff as Carl has been at the club for a very long time and remains such an integral personality within the group".
Ikeme played 23 games for Wolves last season.
Laurie further stated that, “At the same time, we all know what a fighter and a competitor Carl is, and I have no doubt that he will take all of those attributes into this battle, similarly, its goes without saying that Carl and his family will receive the full love and support that we at Wolves can provide – we are all with him every single step of the way towards a full recovery.
There are going to be some very tough times ahead, but he will receive the best possible care, aided and supported by our own club doctor and medical team, as he embarks on the lengthy process of treatment.
We are speaking to Carl regularly, and sending him our very best wishes as he comes to terms with this news and starts his recovery.” he said.
This is a big blow to Nigeria's quest in qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup and the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations as Ikeme is an influential member of Super eagles coached by Gernot Rohr.