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Portuguese back Nuno Pinto takes leave to fight lymphoma

Benfica v Vitoria Setubal

SETUBAL, PORTUGAL - JULY 13: Vitoria Setubal defender Nuno Pinto from Portugal during the match between SL Benfica and Vitoria Setubal FC for the Internacional Tournament of Sadoat Estudio do Bonfim on July 13, 2018 in Setubal, Portugal. (Photo by Carlos Rodrigues/Getty Images)

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Vitorial Setubal left back Nuno Pinto is fighting cancer, but he’s got an entire club on his side.

Pinto, 32, has lymphoma and is taking a leave of absence to fight the disease.

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The Portuguese veteran who wears No. 21 was honored by his fans in the 21st minute of their Tuesday match, and his captain took the microphone for him in the press conference to announce his battle when the emotions became too much.

Here are the inspiring words of Vasco Fernandes, from the BBC:

“He is a warrior. We will always be with him. He’s one of ours and we never dropped one of our own,” he said. “He is a great person and a great father. In a while we’ll remember this as one more battle that we won.”

Pinto has played in the Europa League for Portuguese side National CD. He’s also been on the books at Levski Sofia, Astra Giurgiu, Tavriya Simferopol, Boavista Porto, and CD Trofense.

Follow @NicholasMendola