Andrew Cole reveals he suffered kidney failure as he pulls out of UNICEF charity match
Former Manchester United striker Andrew Cole has withdrawn from an upcoming charity match at Old Trafford and revealed he has been suffering from kidney failure.
The 44-year-old, who won five Premier League titles and the Champions League during a trophy-laden spell with United, said he is not well enough to play in the UNICEF Match for Children, which will take place on November 14.
"In June of this year I suffered kidney failure, caused as a result of contracting an airborne virus and I have been under medical care ever since," Cole said in a statement. "I was admitted to hospital and diagnosed with a condition called Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis."
Cole said he had spent close to three weeks in hospital undergoing a kidney biopsy and dialysis, and he is continuing on a course of steroids which has led to a slight change in his appearance.
In thanking his doctors at the Manchester Royal Infirmary, as well as his family, Cole added: "Together we have been through some dark days. However, the good news is that I am feeling better as each day passes and the consultant is hopeful that I will make a full recovery by next spring."
Cole said he would remain in his role as an ambassador for United.