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Muamba fights for life as soccer world holds its breath

posted 19 Mar 2012, 07:18 by Mpelembe Admin   [ updated 19 Mar 2012, 07:18 ]

Fabrice Muamba fights for his life as Bolton team captain Kevin Davies describes his shock and sense of helplessness after the player collapsed with a heart attack during an FA Cup match.

LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM (MARCH 19, 2012) (ITN) - Bolton Wanderers midfielder Fabrice Muamba remains in a critical condition after suffering a cardiac arrest during an FA Cup quarter-final on Saturday (March 17).

The 23-year-old remains anaesthetised in intensive care after collapsing on the pitch at Tottenham Hotspur's White Hart Lane where he was given CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) by medics before being taken to hospital.

Bolton manager Owen Coyle visited the player in the Heart Attack Centre at the London Chest Hospital on Monday and said later: "When you look at what he's come through in his life already, he's a natural fighter, he's a physically fit young man so I think those two things if they can help at all, that will be a source of help and encouragement."

Real Madrid's players took to the pitch for their home match against Malaga on Sunday night wearing shirts reading 'Get well soon Muamba', a gesture of support which was appreciated by Coyle.

"The support from within the game has been fantastic, we've seen last night the pictures from Real Madrid and worldwide because, I've said before, it's great to be talented at whatever vocation you undertake, be it football or otherwise, but we all know it's more important that you're a genuinely nice person, a humble person, which Fabrice is," said the manager.

Bolton captain Kevin Davies on Monday (March 19) spoke about the moment when the Muamba fell to the turf near the centre circle.

Davies said: "We were following the ball and someone said 'Fabrice has gone down' and we looked and saw him there and then it all just unfolded from there really, it became very serious within a matter of seconds. We all knew there was something seriously wrong.

"It was not nice, you feel yourself powerless to do anything and he's one of your colleagues, one of your friends; he's a father, he's a son, all those kind of things run through your head and you just feel powerless to do anything about it."

Davies was full of praise for the England Under-21 international, who was born in Democratic Republic of Congo, joined Bolton from Birmingham City in 2008 in a deal worth over 5 million pounds ($7.92 million) and has made 130 league appearances for the Premier League club. He came through Arsenal's youth academy and made two League Cup appearances for the north London club in the 2005-06 season.

"We all love Fabrice and I respect him hugely from where he's come from to where he is now," Davies said.

"He's played for his country, he's playing in the Premier League, he's one of the guys that's always first in. He's someone that we can always have a good laugh with, he works extremely hard to better himself, he's always out there doing a bit extra, he's always in the gym, he puts the hours in and that's the reason why he's been so successful and he's still young and has a massive career ahead of him."

Bolton's Premier League game at Aston Villa which was scheduled to take place on Tuesday has been postponed.

Muamba's family, including his fiancee Shauna and his brother, have visited the player.