Watch: Robbie Savage praised after opening up about father's death

Robbie Savage has told of the 'horrendous' time he went through while his father was suffering from a neurodegenerative disease, writes Steve Neville.

The former footballer was speaking on his 5 Live Sport show Flintoff, Savage and the Ping Pong Guy which he co-hosts with Freddie Flintoff and Matthew Syed.

The trio were discussing mental health in sport for Mental Health Awareness Week when Savage opened up about his father's struggle with Pick's disease, also known as frontotemporal dementia.

Robbie Savage. Pic: Mike Egerton/PA Archive/PA Images
Robbie Savage. Pic: Mike Egerton/PA Archive/PA Images

Savage spoke with incredible honesty, despite fears he might get criticised.

"There was times, as much as I hate to say it and I might get a bit criticised for it but...I lived in Manchester, my father was in the Wrexham Maelor Hospital.

"You get in the car and you're driving there thinking: What's the point? I'm going to get there, it's my dad, he hasn't got a clue who I am."

When asked by Syed how it made him feel, Savage responded: "Horrendous."

"Every time I left I was in tears. In tears thinking that's my dad, I'm not going to see him again."

A visibly upset Savage was comforted by Flintoff as he spoke about not being there the day his father passed away.

"I used to go every day to Wrexham, the day he died I wasn't there...I've never forgiven myself for that. It's horrible"

"The first day I wasn't there he passed away and it was terrible, terrible."

The former Derby midfielder's words have received widespread praise on social media.

If you, or someone you know, has been affected by mental health issues you can contact Samaritans on 116 123 or Pieta House on 1800 247 247.

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