Charlton boss Dean Holden chokes on the bucket as he faces Bushtucker’s trial in a brilliant prostate cancer fundraiser
DEAN HOLDEN threw up while playing the role of “I’m a football manager… Get me out of here.”
The Charlton boss had his League One team and backroom staff cheering him on as he downed a disgusting glass of mixed mealworms.
But then they all gasped in astonishment as their gaffer gagged before spitting the foul-smelling concoction into a nearby bucket.
Game-for-a-lauch Holden escorted first-team player affairs manager Tracey Leaburn to a bushtucker trial in their training ground canteen.
They raised money for the club to offer free prostate cancer tests to Charlton and Fleetwood fans ahead of their league clash at The Valley on Saturday.
It’s being conducted on behalf of the Barry Kilby Prostate Cancer Appeal, with nearly 500 participants signed up for the hassle-free five-minute test.
The menu – dubbed Meal Squeal – featured fish eyes, roasted crickets, pig brains, fruit beetle bugs, morio worms and, most disgusting of all, a pig’s anus!
And after they finished their disgusting lunch, the two had to deal with and walk around live snakes in the canteen.
Holden sent shivers down the spines of some players as he approached them with a ball python around his neck – while Tracey had to enjoy the company of a corn snake.
Addick’s right-back Sean Clare master of ceremonies for the hilarious event, ensuring neither backed down.
After his stomach recovered from his culinary horrors, Holden said to me, “How can you describe something as disgusting as mixed mealworms?
“Once it goes in, it’s waiting to come back up, so you fight it.
“It goes down, but it comes up again at the same time. The smell, the taste was terrible.
“Even the little fried crickets in the beginning were like eating a load of Ryvita!”
But the most terrible of all dishes was the pig’s anus.
And Holden grimaced in disgust and said: “I chewed it up to a point – but then I had to put a bit of arugula on the fork to take away the awful taste!
“Whoever came up with this menu was very creative.
“It was horrible from start to finish. It’s sitting there now. Hopefully I don’t have to bring that up again later!”
Ironically, Holden’s wife, TV host Danielle Nicholls, nearly walked into the latest series of “I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here.”
Former West Ham, Tottenham, Portsmouth, QPR, Bournemouth and Southampton boss Harry Redknapp was king of the jungle in 2018.
Holden laughed, “Danielle almost walked in. She’s like me, always up for a laugh, but I’ll certainly never go in there.”
The pig’s anus and brain were provided by Leeds-based butcher Malcolm Michaels, while the rest of the ‘feed’ and snakes were sourced from The Pet Lodge in Mottingham.
Tracey, wife of Charlton legend and former striker Carl, said: “There were loads of mealworms swimming on that drink! I said to our chef, Alan Tyrrell, ‘I thought they should be mixed.’ And he said, ‘The blender couldn’t even blend them all!’
“However, the anus of the pig was by far the worst dish. The smell and taste were disgusting.”
Tracey’s father Graham died of prostate cancer in 2011 at the age of 71 and Charlton Athletic may have saved 65 lives since testing began in 2018.
By Sunday midday, Tracey had crowdfunded £4,272 with a further £1,000 donated by club sponsor Keith Wisdom, with a further £2,000 raised from players.
With some of the money needed to pay health workers, just a little more is left to reach the required £7,500 and any additional funds will be donated to next year’s PSA testing event.
During the quick check-up for men over the age of 45, a blood sample is taken from each man, which is then examined for prostate cancer.
Holden and Tracey at the fundraiser observed father and son season ticket holders, Bob and Gary Millen, both of whom saved their lives through the annual Charlton Testing event.
Bob, 79, took a PSA test before the game against Scunthorpe in 2019, while Gary, 52, was screened before the game at Oxford last season.
Gary’s grandfather and Bob’s father – also known as Bob – died of prostate cancer when he was 75 years old.
Bob said, “You’re two and a half times more likely to get prostate cancer if it runs in the family.
“I had no symptoms at all but tested positive. Because of my age, I had chemotherapy to kill the cancer.”
Gary added: “I got tested last season knowing dad would take care of my case and like him I haven’t had any symptoms yet but tested positive. I also had a high blood count so I had to have surgery to have my prostate removed.
“It’s not embarrassing to do that. Who cares if you’re still alive!
“It’s great that Dean and Tracey pulled this off. Even if you save a life, it’s worth it.”
Holden suffered personal tragedy within his own family when his daughter Cici died aged just 17 months in 2012 while on a family holiday in Lanzarote.
Little Cici died after contracting meningococcal sepsis – a rare bacterial blood infection.
That’s one reason the Charlton boss is passionate about raising money for causes that can potentially save lives.
He said: “Ultimately, things like this cost money and if the government isn’t willing to put money into certain things, you have to find another way to do it.
“That’s why the people who organize and run these tests at Charlton every year are the real heroes. You saved lives. Anything that can identify a terrible disease so it can be treated before it becomes more serious is a great thing.
“I urge anyone 45 years or older to get tested. It’s not a shame at all.”
IF you would like to donate to this amazing cause, click here.
https://www.the-sun.com/sport/7315266/charlton-boss-dean-holden-bushtucker-trial-prostate-cancer/ Charlton boss Dean Holden chokes on the bucket as he faces Bushtucker’s trial in a brilliant prostate cancer fundraiser