A footballer has ambitions for the Paralympics after becoming partially paralysed in a tragic incident.

Chris Keogh, 27, was a striker at AFC Ewell, his team for six years, but dislocated his neck in three places after a freak accident on Saturday, April 14.

“The surgeon told me he’d never seen this type of injury from football before,” said Chris.

“The ball bounced up in the air, I went up to head it like I’d done so many times before, but I ended up on the ground and my body went into pins and needles all over.

“I couldn’t feel the lower half of my body.”

At St George’s Hospital, Chris spent six hours in surgery and bolts were put into his neck and then was in intensive care for eight days.

“I had a chest infection prior to this so I was really struggling to breath,” said Chris.

“The first few days they were helping me cough I was on a machine to help me cough and then managed to stabilise and get a bit better.”

Four days in, Chris received shocking news; the doctor told him he had a complete spinal cord injury.

This means it’s very unlikely Chris will be able to walk again, although he is keen to start swimming as soon as he’s fit enough because he knows it’s “really competitive”.

The hashtag #CK2024 on Chris’s go fund me page references his ambition to compete in the 2024 Paralympics.

He said: “Currently I am on the waiting list for a specialist spinal rehabilitation centre, the Paralympians use their sporting facilities so naturally I’m going to be gunning for a gold medal.”

Chris’s teammates have been fundraising tirelessly for a custom-made wheelchair and other equipment he will need, so far they have raised more than £12,000.

Chris said it was only because his referee put pressure on his neck, after the advice of a junior doctor, that he still has use of his hands.

“I was begging him to take it off because it was so painful, but if he hadn’t I would have moved my neck.”

When he saw them posed in ‘For You CK’ Tee shirts, Chris said, “I just started crying like a little baby”.

Chris said he’s been visited by every single one, who, along with his parents and girlfriend, Daisy, have been “fantastic”.

Driving straight from France to the hospital, his parents have been there every day since.

Despite the extent of his injuries, Chris is feeling far from defeatist. “Mentally I’m doing well,” he said.

“My life plans remain the same. I still intend to see the world and spend the rest of my life with Daisy.”

Donate here to help Chris keep ‘fighting the good fight’: https://www.gofundme.com/chriskeogh