A RADIO host surprised a football fan who set up a sports team for grieving fathers.

Andy Lindley lost his son Dexter at a young age and started Sands United FC for fathers in a similar position to help them cope with the grief.

Now his incredible work has been recognised by BBC Radio One host Greg James.

He and his team surprised Andy with a visit to his Shoreham home to thank him for what he has done as part of their Festive Feeling campaign.

Presenter Charlie Hedges said: “We are here to surprise an incredible man called Andy.

“In 2014 Andy and his wife Leah lost their child Dexter.”

The DJ struggled to hold back tears as she continued to share his story.

She said: “This is one of the most devastating things in the world, no words can come close to describing the pain and suffering experienced by parents going through baby loss during pregnancy, still birth and neo-natal deaths.

“It completely shattered their world.

“Andy couldn’t acknowledge or talk about what had happened to Dexter with anyone for about four years. It wasn’t until he sadly lost his mum two years ago that he decided he had to break the silence.”

So, earlier this year, he set up Sands United FC, a football team made up of fathers who have lost a child.

The Brighton and Hove club now has more than 40 members.

Charlie Hedges knocked on the door of his home and was met by a “speechless” Andy.

She played him a series of tributes from his teammates who said that “no one deserved it more” and praised Andy’s “tireless and selfless work” with the club.

One said: “He has brought countless males together who weren’t able to express their feelings, brought them into a safe environment and let them do what they love best and play football.”

To thank Andy for his work, the radio show organised a surprise for the 38-year-old.

Former England and Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand left him a personal message.

The pundit said: “You are truly incredible and inspiring, using football to talk about mental health, that is the inspiring thing. As a special treat you and your team are going to go down to Brighton and Hove Albion’s training ground and play against some Brighton legends. Take care, merry Christmas and good luck.”

He and his team headed down on Thursday afternoon, watched and supported by friends and family. Andy thanked Greg James and joked he had been “expecting to go shopping”.