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Chris Kamara to leave Sky Sports at the end of the season after 24 years

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Chris Kamara to leave Sky Sports at the end of the season after 24 years with the broadcaster… just weeks after revealing he had developed a speech apraxia disorder

  • Chris Kamara is a popular member of the team on Sky’s Soccer Saturday
  • Kamara said in a statement that he had ‘the time of my life’ working for Sky
  • The 64-year-old recently revealed he had developed a speech disorder
  • Soccer Saturday presenter Jeff Stelling paid tribute to Kamara during Saturday’s programme 

Popular broadcaster Chris Kamara is leaving Sky Sports at the end of the season after 24 years.

The announcement comes just weeks after the former footballer and presenter, 64, revealed he had developed a speech apraxia disorder alongside an existing thyroid issue. 

Sportsmail had revealed Kamara was set to leave the broadcaster at the end of the current campaign back in February.

Kamara is a regular reporter on the Soccer Saturday programme, and has worked on Soccer AM and as a presenter on Goals on Sunday.

‘My long career at Sky Sports has never felt like work. I’ve spent 24 terrific years at Sky, and leave with the best of memories,’ Kamara said in a statement.

Chris Kamara will leave Sky after 24 years with the broadcaster at the end of the season

‘My time on Soccer AM, Goals on Sunday and, of course, on Soccer Saturday with Jeff has been – to coin a phrase – unbelievable.

‘I’ve had the time of my life, and look forward to tuning in every Saturday as a fan.’

Soccer Saturday presenter Jeff Stelling, who initially announced plans to leave Sky before performing a U-turn and agreeing to stay with the broadcaster, paid an emotional tribute to Kamara – affectionately known as ‘Kammy’ – during Saturday’s programme.

Kamara will make his TV return in May, just weeks after announcing he would be taking a break having developed apraxia of speech

Kamara will make his TV return in May, just weeks after announcing he would be taking a break having developed apraxia of speech  

‘He was always immaculately prepared,’ said Stelling. ‘Within football he is so well regarded for his knowledge of the game.

WHAT IS APRAXIA OF SPEECH? 

Apraxia of speech is a motor speech disorder that makes it difficult to speak. 

This disorder can make saying the right sounds and words very difficult and can be observed as slurring.

It is caused by damage to the parts of the brain that control how muscles move, leading to apraxia of speech. 

‘It was a privilege to work with Kammy for so long. I am going to miss him enormously.’

The Soccer Saturday star was inundated with messages in March after after opening up on his diagnosis, with fans, colleagues and sporting figures sending their best wishes to him. 

He admitted that ‘live TV might have to take a back seat’ while he adjusts and tries to build up his speech again, but his return was announced earlier this month as he is set to be a commentator on ITV’s new show The Games in May. 

Fans had been concerned about Kamara’s welfare last month after noticing he was slurring his words on TV, with the presenter later revealing he had been struggling with the neurological condition that makes speech difficult.

Last year Kamara also revealed he had been diagnosed with Hypothyroidism, also known as Underactive Thyroid Disease, a condition when the thyroid gland doesn’t make enough hormones to meet the body’s needs. 

As a result he suffered from ‘brain fog’ and slurred speech but kept his health concerns quiet for two years.

Kamara enjoyed a lengthy playing career and manager spells at Bradford and Stoke City.

Kamara has been described as a'Sky Sports star' by the company's director of football

Kamara has been described as a ‘Sky Sports star’ by the company’s director of football

He is known for his excitable nature when delivering reports from stadiums as part of Soccer Saturday, as well as his unusual sayings and gaffes – including not realising that Anthony Vanden Borre had been sent off in a clash with Portsmouth and Blackburn in 2010.

Sky Sports director of football Gary Hughes said: ‘Kammy has been a Sky Sports star. 

‘Everyone has a favourite Kammy anecdote or highlight, and the tribute we paid to him on air this afternoon really shows the special place he has in the hearts of our viewers.

‘We’ve been so lucky to have him, and he will always be part of the Sky Sports football family.’

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