£100k challenge to help paralysed goalkeeper
A FOOTBALLER left paralysed in a late night attack needs to find thousands of pounds to begin the specialist care he needs.
Former Braintree Town goalkeeper Nicky Morgan faces a wait of up to three months to be transferred for spinal treatment through the NHS, but could start his rehabilitation earlier if enough cash is raised.
His family is organising a benefit night and appealing for everyone to dig deep to get him to a specialist hospital, which would cost £1,500-a-day.
The 25-year-old, who now plays for Billericay Town, remains partially paralysed at Queen's Hospital in Romford after a ten-man attack behind the Sugar Hut night club in Brentwood last month.
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The 6ft 8in goalkeeper from Loughton has regained limited movement in his arms and legs as he makes gradual progress, but is growing increasingly frustrated with the long wait he is facing to begin his recovery.
His eldest brother Ben Morgan, 36, said it remained a "waiting game" to find out whether he would make a full recovery.
Ben, who lives in Chelmsford, said: "Nicky would like to be completely back to normal, but they don't know whether that will happen – not at this stage.
"He has still got aspirations to keep on playing football, but the first thing is to walk again."
He added: "He has slight movement in his arms and legs, but he cannot move his fingers at the moment to press a button or dial a telephone – nowhere near.
"He can't ring a buzzer for help. All he can do is shout for help if he is thirsty, hungry or has an itch, for example. All the things that are taken for granted."
The family had been overwhelmed by the support Nicky has received from his friends, teammates, fans or clubs he has played for.
Now the family is looking for support for the benefit night they are holding on Friday, December 2, in aid of specialist treatment and any equipment that may aid his recovery.
It could cost more than £100,000 to privately transfer Nicky to a specialist hospital, before a bed becomes available through the NHS.
Ben said: "It costs £1,500 a day for a private room and the treatment he would be given as part of the NHS.
"If it does take three months before a bed becomes available that is how much it would cost to get him in before.
"Every day that goes by he gets more and more frustrated.
"He is ready to get going, it is not doing him any favours lying on a bed where he can't do anything at all."
The benefit night is being held at O'Grady's Irish Bar in Ilford and tickets cost £6.