It all started as well as a Bolton Wanderers match away at White Hart Lane possibly could. An early goal from Darren at the near post put Bolton ahead and surprised the hosts. They would equalize 20 or so minutes later but at the end of the half, it all seemed so meaningless. Goals, stadiums, and clubs were minute in the face of what happened next.
In the 41st minute, Tottenham were breaking into the Bolton half after getting control of the ball. Somewhere near midfield, with no other men in his vicinity was Fabrice Muamba. He had collapsed on the field with no warning whatsoever but everyone inside the ground instantly knew something was wrong. Howard Webb and players from both sides were quick to call the physios on with the stretcher. The medical staff attempted CPR on the field before using the defibrillator. Five minutes later, Fab was stretched off the field and on an ambulance headed for the hospital after suffering what appeared to be a heart attack.
The fans at White Hart Lane were tremendous. Many Tottenham fans cried right alongside their Bolton compatriots while the rest chanted Fabrice Muamba over and over. A few minutes into what would have besn the halftime break, an announcement rang out saying that the FA Cup match had been abandoned due to mutual consent by all parties involved.
In the ambulance alongside Muamba were Owen Coyle and Kevin Davies, both embodying the Bolton Wanderers family dynamic while thoughts and prayers for the young midfielder and his family rolled out from all over the world. Andrea Pirlo of Juventus dedicated his side's 5-0 win to Fabrice. "We are all close to him and hopefully he will recover soon." Barcelona's Andres Iniesta along with pretty much every other club in England sent their positive thoughts as well.
After what seemed to be the longest two hours ever, a hospital spokesman said that Muamba was in stable condition. A few hours after that, the club released another statement saying that Muamba was "critically ill" at the London Chest Hospital. Those are all of the details that are available now.
We obviously wish not only the best for Fabrice Muamba but for his fiance (that he proposed to just a few weeks ago) and his young son. Muamba is the team's shining light this season and we hope he eventually makes it back onto the pitch in a Bolton shirt but right now, there's a much bigger fight going on for him band by all accounts, Fabrice Muamba is a fighter.
Get well, Fab.