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Page last updated at 15:36 GMT, Friday, 17 July 2009 16:36 UK

Harford offers support to Hartson

Mick Harford
Harford has remained in touch with Hartson

Luton manager Mick Harford has called former Hatters striker John Hartson's diagnosis with cancer a "tragedy".

The 34-year-old is in a critical but stable condition after being diagnosed with testicular cancer that has spread to his brain and lungs.

Harford told BBC Three Counties Radio: "It's a tragedy, a disaster, and it is a major shock to me.

"I've known John since he used to clean my boots as an apprentice at Luton, so we do go back a long way."

He continued: "It is a terrible shame what has happened.

"I'd like to send my best wishes to his family and more-so to John. Hopefully he is as well as can be. He is in a very very difficult situation at the moment.

"I'm sure all the football world, and the clubs he's played for, Luton, Arsenal, West Ham, Celtic, including a few others and their fans and custodians send him their best wishes.

"I learnt of it on Saturday and was absolutely gobsmacked. It is just a terrible shock and a terrible shame what is happening to a young man."

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