Heart Condition Forces Brighton and Zambian Star into Early Retirement

Brighton’s Zambian midfielder Enock Mwepu has been forced into an early retirement at 24 after being diagnosed with a hereditary heart condition. 

The shocking news was revealed in statements by the Seagulls and Mwepu himself on Monday. 

Brighton’s in a statement announced via Twitter: Enock Mwepu has been forced to end his playing career following the diagnosis of a hereditary heart condition.

While the Zambian international in a later statement on his verified Twitter account tweeted 

Mwepu’s statement read, “A boy from a small Zambian township called Chambishi has some news to share.

“He stood strong to follow his dream of playing football at the highest level, and by the grace of God he lived his dream by reaching the Premier League.

“Some dreams, however, come to an end so it is with sadness that I announce the need to hang up my boots because of the medical advice I have received. This is, however, not the end of my involvement with football. I plan to stay involved in some capacity.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone that supported me in my football journey, including my wife and family, my agent 12MAN, the Zambian FA, all my previous clubs, team-mates and coaches and especially everyone at Brighton & Hove Albion.”

He had taken ill while he was on a flight to join the Zambia squad during the recent international break. 

He was initially treated in a hospital in Mali, he then returned to Brighton to go under further heart examination. 

It was these later diagnoses that revealed that Mwepu’s “illness is due to a hereditary cardiac condition, which manifests later in life and was not previously evident on regular cardiac screening,” according to the club’s statement.

The statement added, “sadly this can be exacerbated by playing sport so Enock has been advised that the only option, for the sake of his own safety, is for him to stop playing football.”

“The condition, which can worsen over time, would put Enock at an extremely high risk of suffering a potentially fatal cardiac event, if he were to continue playing competitive football.”

Mwepu was signed by Brighton from Red Bull Salzburg for 23 million euros on a four-year deal in July 2021. He had so far made 27 appearances for the English side, netting four goals and provided 7 assists. For Zambia, he made 26 appearances and scored 6 goals.   

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