• FA Cup

Crucial 24 hours for Muamba - Coyle

ESPN staff
March 18, 2012
Owen Coyle accompanied Fabrice Muamba to hospital © Getty Images

Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba faces a crucial 24 hours as he fights for his life in hospital, his manager Owen Coyle has said.

The 23-year-old remains critically ill after collapsing during the Trotters' FA Cup tie against Tottenham at White Hart Lane.

Muamba was attended to on the pitch for several minutes before being taken to The London Chest Hospital, where he is being treated in the intensive care unit of the heart attack centre.

Coyle accompanied Muamba to the hospital and later emerged to give an update on the player's progress.

"Fabrice is critically ill," Coyle said. "The next 24 hours are going to be absolutely crucial. We've obviously been inundated with people wishing him well and we hope that if everybody can pray strongly tonight that Fabrice is able to recover.

"It's very serious. There's no getting away from that. He's critically ill and God willing he makes it through."

With the scores level at 1-1 with 41 minutes played, Muamba collapsed near the halfway line. Paramedics spent six minutes trying to resuscitate the former England Under-21 international on the pitch before he was stretchered off amid applause from both sets of fans.

With many players visibly distressed, referee Howard Webb took the players off and shortly afterwards it was confirmed the game would not continue.

Bolton released a statement on Saturday confirming Muamba remained in a criticial condition: "Bolton Wanderers can confirm that Fabrice Muamba has been admitted to the heart attack centre at The London Chest Hospital where he is in a critically ill condition in intensive care.

''No further information will be issued at this stage. The club has requested the media to respect his family's privacy at this time.''

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