Bodde's emotional Liberty return

15th August 2017

Ferrie Bodde admitted it was hard to hold back the tears as he made a special return to the Liberty Stadium recently.

The Dutchman was back at the home of his former club last week for Alan Tate’s testimonial against Manchester United Legends in SA1.

Bodde was a proud dad as his two sons watched on from the touchline as he made an emotional appearance in front of the Jack Army – a return he never thought he’d live to see.

It was his first time back at the Liberty since he was hospitalised with a severe bacterial lung infection that left him in an artificial coma and fighting for his life in 2014.

Support would come from far and wide, none more so than at his former stomping ground where the Swans paid a special tribute to Bodde during a Premier League against Aston Villa at the Liberty.

On the day he woke up in hospital, he watched the Liberty’s LED boards light up with his name, number and message reading 'Once A Jack, Always A Jack'.

It was followed up by a huge roar from Swans fans, who still share their special memories of Bodde’s time at the club - his 45-yard strike at Preston remaining the highlight.

Even now, it is clear just how much that backing boosted Bodde’s spirits.

Thankfully, the 35-year-old is now fit and well as he talks about the darkest moment in his career.

“I remember waking up and I saw there was blood on my pillow. I didn’t tell anyone,” reflects Bodde.

“I went to a tournament with my children and I felt really bad. My girlfriend took me to hospital, and they thought I had tuberculosis.

“After that, a surgeon saw my kidneys, lungs and oxygen were not what they should be. They weren’t operating like they should have been.

“Before I went to sleep, my two children were next to me and I wanted to say goodbye. I was going to die.

“I was really lucky that one of the antibiotics cleared up the bacterial infection. I was also lucky that I was a professional footballer and in good shape because that helped me.

“I asked the doctor “am I going to die?” and he said ‘no, no, no, you’re going to be okay.’

“My family and girlfriend heard different stories. But, fortunately, I am okay now.”

You can watch the full interview with Bodde in this week’s Swans Show via the club website on Friday, where he talks about his time at the Swans, playing again at the Liberty and life after football.

You can watch the first episode of the Swans Show by clicking HERE