Connect with us

English Football League

Ex-England footballer turned manager sadly diagnosed with cancer

More sad news on Monday morning with confirmation that an ex-England footballer turned manager has been sadly diagnosed with cancer.

Mick Harford, who was most recently the boss Championship outfit of Luton Town, is set to take time out of football.

Currently acting as Luton’s assistant manager, the Hatters confirm that he will undergo a course of radiotherapy treatment for prostate cancer.


We are sorry to inform supporters that Mick Harford is currently fighting prostate cancer.

Our assistant-manager Mick, 62, will undergo a course of radiotherapy treatment, starting in mid-August which will keep him away from the Club on a daily basis for a length of time.

As you would expect from a man who has fought so many battles over five glorious decades in football, this is not one that Mick is taking lying down.

He was first diagnosed in December 2020 and has continued to perform his duties with the same commitment and determination he has always shown for every role he has fulfilled at Kenilworth Road.

Mick’s role has included recording video messages or calling supporters on an almost daily basis, bringing cheer and best wishes, as well as match day team news, for Lutonians who have been struggling themselves, during the pandemic.

For now though, Mick – the scorer of 92 goals in 217 appearances for the Hatters as a player, including the 1988 Littlewoods Cup win, and manager of the Town’s Johnstone’s Paint Trophy and League One-winning sides – has an extra special message to deliver.

“What I want is to raise awareness and encourage other men to go and get themselves checked out,” said Big Mick. “That’s what I did and it’s not something that we are good at, us middle-aged and older men.

“We don’t like to talk about illness or go to the doctor, because we think we might be wasting their time, especially in the current climate with Covid. It is so vital not to think like that. The early symptoms of prostate cancer aren’t always noticeable, which is why it is so important to go to your GP and get checked out.

“I know a few people at the football club who have gone and done so since I was first diagnosed, and if our wonderful supporters can do one thing for me, it is to do exactly that, because early diagnosis is so crucial.

“I’ve been on hormone medication treatment for several months, but I now need to have a course of radiotherapy, at UCLH in London, where my oncology team have been brilliant with me. I’m really happy with the treatment I’m receiving, albeit it’s going to be a long journey which means I won’t be around on a daily basis at the training ground, which as everyone knows, is what I love doing.

“What’s essential to me is that the focus of the club should be on the new season, which we’re on the cusp of.

“I want to thank everyone at the football club for their support. Gary and the board, Nathan, the staff and all the players have been so helpful to me over the past few months. Please continue to give them your wholehearted support. I will be on hand to help them and the players in whatever way I can, whilst also raising awareness about prostate cancer, to help others.”

It doesn’t need saying, but everyone at Kenilworth Road gives their love and best wishes to Big Mick – who will be supported by his Luton Town family every step of the way.

*For more information about prostate cancer and how you can spot the signs and get checked out, please visit prostatecanceruk.org

Prostate Cancer Risk Factors & Symptoms | PSA Test | Check4Cancer

Ex-England footballer turned manager sadly diagnosed with cancer

Fans reacted with the ex-England footballer turned manager sadly diagnosed with cancer…

@Heather14220711: all the luck & strength in this battle, tackle it like you did the opposition over the years ! Thank you for highlighting the importance of getting checked as well xx

@PeppiattColin: Absolute legend of a man. Write to him as a child in his Wimbledon days and got a lovely letter back. Great guy.

@arfasarnie: Oh Big Mick. Sending love and strength to you and your family. You’re a fighter mate and you’ll win this one. Big love from Oz

@chrisdalton1977: All the best with this fight Mick – we are all behind you and praying for a swift recovery

@DottieJanes: Sending masses of positive vibes your way Mick. Go kick its butt. We are all with you. Much love x

@JWildman1990: So sorry to hear this, sending love to Mick and his family and friends

@Superhatter: The whole @LutonTown family is right behind you Mick. You can fight this and be back in the fold later this year.

@MacbethSeath: You’ve got this Mick, battler on and off the pitch. The roar of the KR crowd when you return to us fit and healthy will be the biggest you’ve ever heard. Take your time and know that thousands are supporting you close and from afar.

@MatthewScholes: Absolute hero, Luton legend, top striker, brilliant coach, amazing scout, but above all a kind and incredible human being. Everyone is with you Mick

@IanWLee23: Reading the article, it sounds as if everything possible is being done, at the right time. Now time for a different treatment. This sounds as positive as it can be. Here’s hoping for the best outcome possible. All the best, @Mickharford

@GraemeLewis1: All the best @Mickharford. He went out of his way to send my son a birthday video msg, utmost respect & love for him. You’ve got this Big Mick!

@CNBeresford: Wishing you a speedy recovery, Cancer will regret picking a fight with Big Mick! We are all behind you.

@GaryAlanMcPheat: Big Mick. Sending you lots of love and positive prayers for a complete recovery. You are one very special man and I am so glad that I have met up with you on a number of occasions. We are all with you Mick.

@StuartGrant68: Wishing you all the best, Mick, and a speedy recovery. Full respect to you for all you’ve achieved in your career and for your positive, inspiring attitude: I recall your days at my club @BCFC with great affection. Take care 💪 KRO!

@ForzaSunderland: All the best Mick from Sunderland. Hope to have you back quickly.

@lloydyhomann: Luton hero and club legend, everyone’s with you.

@DarranMurtagh: Best of luck @Mickharford. Luton is rooting for you.

@Steveroch777: All the best Mick. Stay positive. One of the best centre forwards we had at Birmingham City.

@Decadan: So sorry to hear this. Please make a full recovery Mick.

@TheSaulGoodman: Best wishes Mick to you and the family.

@hatterneil: Sorry to hear this but I’ve no doubt @Mickharford will come through this and be back at the club where belongs when the time is right. Best wishes, big Mick

@PhilShawshanks: Wishing you every strength for the battle ahead.

@McMcaman: Best wishes to Mick from all ITFC supporters get well soon

@DuncWain: Best wishes to Mick and everybody at the club, although I’m a Watford fan, met him a few times and he’s a really nice guy, hope he smashes it

@Steevesharpe: Wishing you all the best in overcoming this @Mickharford Very best wishes with you.

@MartinEcott1: You can beat this Mick. Stay strong we’re all behind you and look forward to seeing you back at the Kenny very soon 🧡

@GlennMcG4: Get well soon @Mickharford every single Luton fan loves and adores you xx

@glenmaxwell76: Get well soon, you will fight it and win the battle.

@Lutontilidie: You’re not alone in this fight Mick. We are with you every step. #teamluton

@StuartKemp525: Thoughts with big @Mickharford and his family!

@stevewatson1404: One of the most respected men on the scouting circuit. Sending you all the very best wishes Mick

@ALS_Fanzine: Best wishes for a speedy recover @Mickharford

@LutonEye: I know Mighty Mick will fight this with everything he has got. Every Hatter is with you, Sir.🧡🖤🤍

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

More in English Football League