Football

Gazza to help struggling Quakers

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Paul Gascoigne is to return to football in a one-off "all stars" match to raise funds for Coca-Cola League Two club Darlington.

The former Newcastle, Tottenham and England midfielder will take to the pitch at the Darlington Arena on May 3 in a fund-raising friendly.

The club went into administration in February after getting into financial trouble.

The League Two side were docked 10 points as a result, and are yet to find a new owner.

Darlington confirmed that Gascoigne would be among the players to take part in a match, pitting the players who starred in the 1999-2000 season's play-off final team against a side of north-east football stars.

Gascoigne, who last played a professional match in 2004, has reportedly begun training in preparation for the game.

The fallen star has undergone treatment for alcoholism, bulimia and obsessive compulsive disorder. Last year he was sectioned under the Mental Health Act following an incident in Newcastle.

His agent Stuart Skinner told the Northern Echo he was working hard to return to fitness, and was hoping to play "10 to 15 minutes" of the game.

Gascoigne will appear alongside Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate, ex-Sunderland defender Kevin Ball and former Darlington star Marco Gabbiadini.

A Darlington spokesman said: "The club have many more exciting names appearing on the day, with legends from Newcastle United, Middlesbrough and Sunderland all agreeing to help."

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Topics:
Tottenham Hotspur
Sunderland
Football
Newcastle United
Paul Gascoigne
Gareth Southgate
League Two
Middlesbrough

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