Football pundit Chris Kamara says live TV to 'take a back seat' after revealing speech problem

Chris Kamara has become renowned for his live reporting Credit: PA

Chris Kamara says his beloved live television appearances "might have to take a back seat" after he was diagnosed with a speech condition.

The Sky football pundit revealed on Twitter at the weekend that he was suffering from apraxia of speech.

It came after fans noticed that he had been slurring his words while reporting on Rotherham's match against Shrewsbury for the broadcaster's Soccer Saturday programme.

He received a huge response on social media, with thousands of messages of support.

But in a follow-up tweet on Monday, he suggested he would not be appearing live for a period.

Thanking fans for their best wishes, he joked: "Unfortunately for you viewers this is not the end of me but 'live TV' might have to take a back seat at the moment."

The 64-year-old made over 600 appearances in the Football League during his playing career, including for Leeds United, Sheffield United and Bradford City.

Since becoming a pundit he has amassed a huge following and become renowned for his lively and often unpredictable on-screen reporting and his catchphrase "unbelievable Jeff!" – a reference to Sky Sports colleague Jeff Stelling.

What is apraxia of speech (AOS)?

Also known as acquired apraxia of speech or verbal apraxia, AOS is a neurological disorder that affects the brain pathways involved in planning the sequence of movements involved in producing speech.

The brain knows what it wants to say, but cannot properly plan and sequence the required speech sound movements.

The condition is not caused by weakness or paralysis of the speech muscles, which results in a separate speech disorder, known as dysarthria.

The severity of AOS varies from person to person. It can be so mild that it causes trouble with only a few speech sounds or with pronunciation of words that have many syllables.

In the most severe cases, someone with AOS might not be able to communicate effectively by speaking, and may need the help of alternative communication methods.

Is it treatable?

Speech-language pathologists use different approaches to treat AOS, and no single approach has been proven to be the most effective.

In severe cases, adults and children with AOS may need to find other ways to express themselves, including sign language.

On Twitter Kamara wrote: "Some days it can be a little slow and some days it's normal. Hopefully I can beat this!"