Former Premier League defender Jose Enrique recovering from surgery to remove brain tumour

ALEX YOUNG
Form | Jose Enrique spent the majority of his career in the Premier League, with Newcastle and Liverpool: Liverpool FC via Getty Images

Former Premier League defender Jose Enrique has revealed he is recovering from surgery to remove a brain tumour.

The 32-year-old, who is now retired after a 13-year professional career, was at risk of losing his sight following a diagnosis of a chordoma in his skull which was discovered on a trip to London with his girlf

Writing on Instagram, Enrique said: "Sorry I haven't been around much, It has been the toughest few weeks of my life.

"Within the space of one month I have found out the news that I have a rare brain tumour and had surgery to have it removed, I am now in recovery and so thankful, Life is too precious."

(Liverpool FC via Getty Images)

Enrique had been working as an agent since ending his playing days, and told Spanish newspaper Marca he first realised something was seriously wrong after suffering headaches while meeting with Brighton manager Chris Hughton.

He was initially treated in London but once the diagnosis was known Enrique returned home to Valencia to have the tumour removed at La Fe hospital. He still needs further sessions of radiotherapy before making a full recovery.

"There are only four machines in Europe," he told Marca. "My options are to go to Zurich or Paris. I have to have 35 sessions. It will take about a month and a half, but that is not important. I want to get well.

"I was told that I might stay blind, but then I regained my vision and even the doctors were surprised.

(Getty Images)

"I want to thank my girlfriend, my parents and my brothers, as well as Dr Simal, his team and La Fe hospital."

Jose Enrique's girlfriend Amy Jaine posted on Instagram: "This last month has been the hardest of our lives.. we found out on a travel to London that Jose has a rare type of brain tumor.

"He has since then had it removed successfully and is in recovery. We are so lucky and thankful for the help of St. George’s hospital London and neurosurgeon Dr Simal here in Valencia.

Jose has always been a person who eats amazingly healthy, never drank alcohol or smoked in his life and had a career as a professional footballer.

"It puts everything into perspective in life and just shows that anything can happen to anyone at anytime.

"So hold your loved ones close, cuddle them when you can, tell them how much you love them and appreciate all the goodness that you have around you. Life is too precious

Enrique joined Newcastle from Villarreal in 2017 and made over 100 league appearances before switching to Liverpool in 2011.

He spent five seasons at Anfield before joining Real Zaragoza in 2016.

"All this makes me value life more," he added. "Football players live in a bubble, it's an unreal life. You lose yourself and think you're invincible."

LIverpool FC posted online: "Wishing you a full and speedy recovery, Jose. Our thoughts are with you and your family. "