[QODLink]
Football

Barcelona head coach to undergo surgery

Messages of support flood in for Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova as it is revealed his cancer has returned.
Last Modified: 19 Dec 2012 18:21
Barcelona have cancelled a Christmas event reportedly due to head coach Tito Vilanova (R) health [GALLO/GETTY]

Barcelona manager Tito Vilanova is to undergo surgery on Thursday followed by chemotherapy and radiotherapy over the next six weeks after his cancer returned said the club in a statement on Wednesday.

Rumours started circulating that Vilanova had suffered a relapse of the cancer in his saliva glands after Spanish daily El Pais reported on the head coach's condition.

The 44-year-old Vilanova, who underwent surgery on a tumour in his glands in November last year, stepped up from his role as assistant to replace Pep Guardiola as first-team coach for this season.

The La Liga leaders put out a statement cancelling a Christmas event planned with local media and president Sandro
Rosell in the morning.

"Very sorry to hear the news," Barca midfielder Xavi said on his official Twitter account, as messages of support flooded in.

"All my strength and support for Tito Vilanova! We are all with you to overcome this next hurdle"

Tennis player Rafa Nadal

Former tennis world number one Rafa Nadal said: "All my strength and support for Tito Vilanova! We are all with you to overcome this next hurdle."

Vilanova was out of action for around three weeks after surgery last year, but returned to the dugout to help Guardiola for the last six months of the 2011-12 campaign.

The quietly-spoken Catalan said the experience had left him with a different perspective on life, at his presentation in June.

"I had an important operation a few months ago," he said.

"I spoke with the medics and my family about the job, but they all said I was perfectly okay and there was no problem.

"Having overcome this operation it gives me a different view on life. Perhaps, after what has happened, training Barca will be like kids play."

Vilanova has guided the team to the top of La Liga with 15 wins in 16 games, nine points clear of second-placed Atletico Madrid, and into the last 16 of the Champions League as group winners.

Barca have one game left, away at Valladolid in La Liga on Saturday, before the two-week winter break.

351

Source:
Reuters
Topics in this article
People
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Muslim volunteers face questioning and threat of arrest, while aid has been disrupted or blocked, charities say.
Six months on, outrage and sorrow over the mass schoolgirl abduction has disappeared - except for families in Nigeria.
ISIL combatants seeking an 'exit strategy' from Mideast conflict need positive reinforcement back home, analysts say.
European nation hit by a wave of Islamophobia as many young fighters join ISIL in Syria and Iraq.
Featured
Lack of child protection laws means abandoned and orphaned kids rely heavily on the care of strangers.
At least 25 tax collectors have been killed since 2012 in Mogadishu, a city awash in weapons and abject poverty.
Since she was 16-years-old, Scottish Nationalist Party's Sturgeon has strove for independence from the UK.
Armed group's ransom success with German hostages marks a re-emergence, as authorities investigate ISIL links.
Western nations are moving into the resource-rich country after decades of disinterest, challenging China's interests.