Chelsea goalkeeper Ann-Katrin Berger is set for a spell away from the game after confirming a recurrence of thyroid cancer.
Berger had been diagnosed with the disease during November 2017 when she was playing for Birmingham, but made a full recovery to continue her career, joining Chelsea in January 2019.
The 31-year-old German revealed on Tuesday that tests had shown further issues have now developed again so is set for more treatment.
“I wanted to update fans directly that unfortunately, after four years of living cancer-free, there has been a recurrence detected in my thyroid,” Berger said in a statement on social media.
“I’ve said before that as a sportsperson you have to fight every day to be the best you can be and that’s something I will continue to do and I hope by sharing my journey, I can help others that find themselves in a similar situation.
“I am working closely with my club doctor and specialist in London and my treatment will start this week.
“I remain positive that my treatment will be as effective as last time and I’m looking forward to returning to the pitch and seeing you all at Kingsmeadow and Stamford Bridge.”
A statement from the Blues added: “Everyone at Chelsea is behind her during this difficult time and the club will provide any support we can to help her make a speedy recovery.
“We look forward to seeing her back between the posts for the Blues as soon as possible.”