Peter Dearle may look like he has every young boy’s dream job. Travelling across the world to play football, and able to make a living out of it.
Peter’s been playing football since he was six. Captaining youth sides at Derby County, Peterborough United and Notts County, before eventually turning professional at the latter for the 2017/18 season, it may look like Peter’s made his path into football look quite easy.
However, the last two years have been everything but for him; rupturing his Anterior Cruciate Ligament, which saw him sidelined from the game for nearly a year, being diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes, and then last summer being released from Notts County, and being forced to uproot to America to try and maintain a career in the game he’s been brought up a part of.
Peter, who now plays for Charleston Soccer Club says, “I love the game. The game is my life. It’s taught me life lessons from early on: to be disciplined, maintained, well-behaved, the respect barrier, which is why I continue to play it. I love the game.”
Whilst it isn’t unheard of for a footballer to be diabetic, it is rare. A quick Wikipedia search on the subject shows a list of 15 prominent footballers past and present with the disability, not a lot.
So how hard is it for Peter to play football whilst suffering from the disease?
Well, during a game, Peter not only has to concentrate on his ability, making sure he implements his manager’s tactics best he can, but ensure he checks his levels as regularly as possible, to make sure he doesn’t drop below his level, and worse case scenario, collapse on the pitch.
Click below to hear how Peter manages to balance his diabetes alongside his football.
Even though he lives in America for the overwhelming majority of the year, Peter’s medication is covered by the NHS. He takes six months stock over with him twice a year.
It’s therefore no surprise that with Brexit looming closer and closer, Peter is concerned to say the least, that his stock won’t be readily available when he needs it.
Listen to the full interview below, where Peter talks not just about that, but how he needs to put in so much work to be just at the same level as his teammates, and how one day he hopes to reap the rewards of it, despite living with what he calls a ‘hidden disease’.
Cover Photo Credit: Notts County FC
Trainee Sports Journalist at Teesside University.