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Former West Brom and Aston Villa stars dust off boots for terminally ill goalkeeper's final wish

Former stars of Albion and Villa have agreed to dust off their boots in a benefit match for ex-goalkeeper Derek Dudley.

Derek Dudley when he played for Telford United.
Derek Dudley when he played for Telford United.

Dudley, who spent four years at Villa in the 1980s and also played for the Baggies, is terminally ill at the age of just 47.

Members of Villa’s 1982 European Cup winning side like Gordan Cowans, Nigel Spink, Pat Heard, Tony Morley and Peter Withe will line up alongside Albion heroes Richard Sneekes and Bob Taylor in the Midlands Legends team taking on Romulus Veterans at Sutton Coldfield Town on Sunday, November 19.

Former footballers Julian Joachim, Darren Byfield, Lee Hendrie and Tony Daley will also be in attendance.

“Derek’s in a bad way,” said one of his friends, Jon Pearson. “He’s terminally ill because his liver has stopped working and he is currently having his stomach drained of excess fluid.”

Derek lives in Rugeley with his wife Helen and two children Daniel, 13, and Elizabeth, 11.

His bucket list includes having a nice meal with his children and getting the ‘lads’ together for one last game.

Former long-serving Baggies defender Daryl Burgess said: “We need your help. Please come and support this game on behalf of our ex team-mate Derek Dudley. It’s one of his final wishes.”

Admission is priced at £3 for adults; £1 children; and a family ticket for two adults and two children is £5.

The game takes place at 10.30am on Sunday, November 19, at Sutton Coldfield Town FC in Coles Lane.

Those in attendance are invited back for refreshments and an auction at The Yenton pub, Sutton Road, Wylde Green. All proceeds will go directly to Derek and his family.

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