JOE Thompson thanked Bury for giving him the chance to “rebuild his career” after agreeing a pay-as-you-play deal with the League Two title favourites.
The 25-year-old midfielder, who was out for the majority of last season after battling to overcome cancer, has been without a club since his contract at Tranmere ran out in June.
But after enjoying a successful trial with Bury during pre-season, Shakers manager David Flitcroft confirmed yesterday that Thompson had been offered a deal.
And the player, who worked with Flitcroft at his former club Rochdale, confirmed planned to sign the contract on his Twitter account.
“Bury have given me the opportunity to rebuild my life and get my career back on track. For that I am truly grateful,” he wrote, before bidding farewell to the Tranmere fans who supported his fight to beat Hodgkin’s lymphoma and also explaining why he left the club.
“I would like to thank all the Tranmere fans and a certain few members of staff for supporting me throughout the nightmare year. But you can’t sign on a dotted line that isn’t there.
“Sad times but life moves on. Looking forward to the future with #Shakers.”
Thompson was only given the all-clear - that he was in full remission - by doctors in June after undergoing a six-month course of chemotherapy following his nightmare diagnosis last October.
Flitcroft confirmed the club’s medical staff would continue to work with his specialists to ensure the midfielder was not rushed back into action too soon.
“He has done enough in pre-season to show us his body is going to come back to full strength,” said the manager.
“He is still not there as his body has taken one hell of a knock, but I do feel as though the type of wage we are looking at will give him an opportunity to work with us and we have got a good team here to work with him to get his body strength back, but it is coming.”
During his own battle, Thompson helped to raise more than £16,000 for Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research as part of the "Grow 4 Joe" campaign, with team-mates and footballers from other clubs pledging to grow their hair in the closing weeks of last season.
That earned him widespread support and praise around the country.
And Thompson was given a rousing reception by both sets of supporters at the JD Stadium yesterday when he came on in the second half, as Bury played out an entertaining 3-3 draw with his former side Rochdale.
And Thompson acknowledged that support on Twitter: “Really appreciate the reception from the Bury and Rochdale fans when I came on #respect #proud #babysteps.”