Five-year-old with brain tumour named in Rochdale squad

• Boy with terminal condition to be honoured at Hartlepool game
• Joshua McCormack too ill to attend Checkatrade Trophy match

A five-year-old boy who has been diagnosed with a terminal brain tumour will be in the squad for Wednesday night’s Checkatrade Trophy match against Hartlepool United.

Joshua McCormack has been named by manager Keith Hill as one of Dale’s seven substitutes for the match at Victoria Park.

The boy is too poorly to attend the game but his shirt will hang in the dressing room before the match and will take pride of place on the substitutes’ bench. His name will also appear on the teamsheet.

Joshua is currently being cared for in a local hospice and Hill, his backroom staff and the players will visit the young Dale fan at the hospice on Thursday. They will present Joshua and his family with his matchday shirt and an official teamsheet, as well as a shirt which has been signed by all of the players.

Hill commented: “It is a real honour to name Joshua McCormack as a substitute for tonight’s game. He has touched the hearts of everyone at Rochdale Football Club since we met him for the first time back in February.

“No child should have to go through what Joshua is going through and we, as a club and a group of players, will continue to do whatever we can to support him and his family. We hope this one small gesture can bring some light to his family during this difficult time.

Joshua, who is from Rochdale, was diagnosed with a brain tumour last year and his family were given the news at the end of September that his illness is now terminal.

The youngster, who has been given squad number 55, was mascot for the day in August.


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