World cup footballer John Barnes has been called in to replace Martin Kemp on ITV's second series of 71 Degrees North, following an injury suffered by the actor on the programme. According to The Sun, Kemp hurt his back whilst filming for the gruelling snow-based reality show in Norway.
The paper claims that Barnes was in Johannesburg when he got the call, but was more than up and ready for the challenge. "Being in South Africa did not put him off," source told the tabloid, "He just said, 'When do you need me?', and the reply was NOW.
"He jumped on the next flight and landed in Norway this week."
The insider continued: "Martin had totally crocked himself and was ruled out by the medics. He did something to his back and was crying out in pain. The producers were panicking as they are in the middle of filming."
47-year-old Barnes, who previously appeared on rival BBC One reality show Strictly Come Dancing back in 2007, is tipped to be one of the biggest characters on the new series. An insider revealed: "He's up for all the challenges and is still pretty fit for someone who hasn't played pro football for more than ten years."
Other celebs in the line up include presenter Angelica Bell, hairstylist to the stars Nicky Clarke and actors Sean Maguire and John Thomson.
The show, set to air on ITV this autumn will be hosted by Paddy McGuinness and Charlotte Jackson, as TellyMix reported earlier this month.