Anthony Gordon delights young fan by driving to Manchester for hospital visit

Anthony Gordon with Jozef Burch
Anthony Gordon with Jozef Burch -Credit:Marta Burch

Anthony Gordon delighted a young Toon fan undergoing gruelling cancer treatment this weekend after surprising him with a visit at Manchester Children's Hospital.

Gordon didn't travel for the Magpies' 4-2 victory over Brentford on the final day of the season due to injury, but as his teammates were warming up on the pitch, he was entering Manchester Children's Hospital to visit eight-year-old Jozef Burch. Jozef has acute myeloid leukaemia (AML) and is undergoing a second round of chemotherapy.

Jozef's dad Jon has lived in Manchester since 2001, but is Newcastle born and bred - originally hailing from Gosforth. The 50-year-old is a massive Toon fan, and has passed that on to his son, telling ChronicleLive: "It was such a shock for me and for Jozef.

"Bearing in mind we are 160 miles away and he came all this way to spend time with someone he's very met before is phenomenal. Jozef is a very happy little boy and that makes me happy."

Marta, Jozef's mum, added: "Jozef was gobsmacked, he didn't know what to do with himself. Anthony turning up with his girlfriend is really, really nice and it was nice for him to be able to have a chat with someone he watches on the telly, it was wonderful."

Anthony Gordon signing a shirt and chatting to Jozef Burch
Anthony Gordon signing a shirt and chatting to Jozef Burch -Credit:Marta Burch

Jozef was diagnosed with AML in March of this year and Marta says that he has "good days and bad days", Sunday being one of the good ones. She continued: "When Anthony was leaving, him and his girlfriend were asking about Jozef's condition - until it happens to you, you don't realise how quickly your life can change, and it's so hard sometimes."

The Newcastle winger may have spent the final day of the season elsewhere had it not been for Jozef's friend Lottie Tierney, who is also eight years old and having treatment on the same ward for Ewing Sarcoma. The young Manchester City fan has received signed shirts from the champions' squad, and even a card from Pep Guardiola since she was diagnosed in November last year.

Lottie's dad Paul posted on X (formerly known as Twitter) in the hope of getting a signed shirt or card for Jozef, but never even contemplating a visit. He said: "It exploded and within 24 hours Anthony Gordon is in the hospital with us.

Anthony Gordon with Jozef Burch and Lottie Tierney
Anthony Gordon with Jozef Burch and Lottie Tierney -Credit:Marta Burch

"I can't explain what a gent he was, just him and his girlfriend doing it off their own backs is amazing. The response for Jozef from the Newcastle fans, and lots of fans, on Twitter has also been incredible - I have got a big flag in my hand now for him which says "Howay the Lads" which a local fan has given me."

Marta finished: "It was so wonderful for Paul to organise something like this, and it's so nice that people take time out to do things for other people and other people's kids, just to put a smile on their faces."