Bristol Rovers shave heads in support of Anderton

In July, Bristol Rovers announced that defender Nick Anderton had been diagnosed with a rare form of bone cancer. Osteosarcoma is an aggressive form of cancer, but there is treatment. 90% of patients are able to have limb-salvage surgery but there tends to be further complications following this procedure.

Nick Anderton has already begun his treatment, he had part of his femur removed and is now undergoing chemotherapy. Anderton is receiving plenty of support from the football world.

For example, Liverpool FC have put an ‘Anderton 16’ shirt up for auction to raise funds for the Bristol Rovers defender, and a Twitter post saw the squad and Jurgen Klopp at the AXA training ground demonstrating their support.

Support from within

The latest display of support came from the football family in which he belongs.

Forty Bristol Rovers members of staff – including playing and non-playing staff – have shaved their heads in a sign of support for their team-mate. They chose January 16th as the date they would shave their heads in honour of their number 16.

Head coach Joey Barton joked that the team would be a ‘commentators nightmare’ with everyone having a shaved head, but for such a phenomenal cause it won’t be an issue for anyone in and around the sport.

The man in red shaving Barton’s head is Terry Joyce – a fan of city rivals, Bristol City, and manager of British Barbers Co in Clifton, Bristol.

Although a fan of The Robins, Joyce asked for no payment, but did have one condition. He is wearing the red of Bristol City whilst in the act – yet he did have Anderton 16 on the back of his shirt as a further sign of support.

Terry’s kindness is proof that human nature and empathy transcends the tribalism of football and the bitterness of rivalry.

The strength they’ve given my family can’t be described

Anderton in response to the support he has received

Bristol Rovers have set a GoFundMe page to raise funds for Nick Anderton whose contract with the club is set to expire in the summer during his treatment. The total donations currently stand at £44k! You can donate via the link below.

Nick Anderson Fundraiser

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