July 4, 2022

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Paul Canoville thanks fans for ‘outpouring of love’ after ‘closest call yet’

Former Chelsea star Paul Canoville has thanked fans for an outpouring of ‘love and support’ after going into intensive care last month following complications after surgery.

It emerged at the beginning of February that the 58-year-old, the Blues’ first ever black player, was in a critical condition following complications after emergency surgery.  

In a statement posted on social media on Tuesday, Canoville provided followers with an update on his health. 

Paul Canoville, Chelsea's first black player, has been in a critical condition recently

Paul Canoville, Chelsea's first black player, has been in a critical condition recently

Paul Canoville, Chelsea’s first black player, has been in a critical condition recently

Canoville went into intensive care after complications following emergency surgery

Canoville went into intensive care after complications following emergency surgery

Canoville went into intensive care after complications following emergency surgery

Canoville provided an update on his health via social media on Tuesday

Canoville provided an update on his health via social media on Tuesday

Canoville provided an update on his health via social media on Tuesday

‘Good morning family and friends,’ the statement read. ‘I’m truly overwhelmed by the outpouring of love and good wishes sent to me and my family.

‘Please accept my heartfelt love and gratitude to each and everyone (sic) of you who had me in your thoughts and prayers. 

‘Although this has been my closest call yet; the positicve vibes, love and prayers of you all has seen me through.

‘It’s a long way to my full recovery but I’m here – thank you for believieng in me and I can’t wait to see you all.

‘Thank you @readingfc @NHSEngland @ChelseaFC & all you wonderful people. Canners.’ 

Chelsea displayed a new banner for the first time, paying tribute to him during the match against Newcastle at Stamford Bridge on February 15, which Thomas Tuchel’s side won 2-0.

The former winger – who has beaten cancer three times – joined Chelsea in 1981 and stayed for a five-year spell, making 79 appearances in blue and white.  

He remains a valued part of the club, working on his foundation which aims to motivate young people who face challenges early in their lives.

Canoville, 58, continues to play a huge role in campaigns tackling racism and discrimination

Canoville, 58, continues to play a huge role in campaigns tackling racism and discrimination

Canoville, 58, continues to play a huge role in campaigns tackling racism and discrimination

A banner was placed in Stamford Bridge to pay tribute to Canoville on February 15

A banner was placed in Stamford Bridge to pay tribute to Canoville on February 15

A banner was placed in Stamford Bridge to pay tribute to Canoville on February 15

‘Paul has a major place in Chelsea history,’ Chelsea said in a statement after Canoville went into intensive care. 

‘He made his debut in 1982 and was the first black player in our men’s first team.

‘He faced considerable prejudice but stayed strong and went on to make 100 appearances, including during the glorious promotion of 1983-84 and a memorable season in the top flight that followed.

‘In more recent times Paul has been back involved in the club, working on Chelsea Foundation projects and as a host in the hospitality areas at Stamford Bridge.’