Football doesn’t matter anymore. It lies in insignificance at this time.
A choir of over 30,000 supporters at White Hart Lane last night poured their lungs out to sing using every breath in a bid to inspire a revival for Fabrice Muamba as he lay on the pitch surrounded by a crowd of prayers. Fans of both sides were singing to save a life.
Those thousands of supporters were joined by millions across the country saddened by the horrific scenes at the Lane and prayed that Muamba would make it through one of football’s worse days.
Medics of both clubs at the FA Cup Quarter Final between Tottenham Hotspur and Bolton Wanderers rushed to the 23-year-old’s rescue with immediacy and fought tirelessly to save one of football’s brightest characters. Their efforts cannot be faulted in this case of emergency.
Bolton Wanderer’s fans this morning left get well soon tributes outside the Reebok Stadium in light of the events of yesterday. But football fans from across the country will be sparing moments throughout the day to have a few thoughts for the midfielder.
Muamba has been taken to the London Chest Hospital, the best place for him at this time of devastation, where the population wishes him a successful and speedy recovery.
It was possibly the most distressing site football has seen to date. Muamba’s heart was pumped and pumped again and pumped again. White Hart Lane remained in silence as did the rest of the country.
This was a time where football didn’t matter. When anyone would sacrifice their place in the competition, even in the game, for Fabrice Muamba to make it through.
Howard Webb acted magnificently to pull the players away from the situation and act promptly to abandon the game. There is no way anyone could continue, or would want to continue, after the stomach-churning scenes just witnessed.
Fabrice Muamba played 33 times for England Under 21s throughout his career and was a saint to the side. His stunning appearance record came of the fact he has never gained an England senior cap, and therefore made him eligible to represent the younger side as their one chosen extra player.
The Congo-born star came to England at the age of 11 after his father came to the country because of his political views. Muamba could not speak a word of English but settled in East London and even went on to take A-Levels whilst at Arsenal’s academy.
The football world united last night. #PrayForMuamba instantly trended on social media site Twitter with some of the game’s top players showing their support for their fellow professional. England striker Frazier Campbell tweeted “Hope to God Fabrice is OK. I feel sick.” and that tweet paralleled the feelings of many of the players on the pitch at the time of the incident. Players were visibly moved with Rafael Van der Vaart pictured praying to the heavens and Jermaine Defoe, a good friend of the Bolton star, left devastated.
Everton’s Tim Cahill tweeted “This is now a day when football all across the world comes together to pray for Muamba. It puts everything into perspective.”
Thoughts are obviously with the family and close friends of Fabrice Muamba at this difficult time. Muamba was last said to be in a “stable” condition and everyone in football hopes that he makes it through. Words cannot describe how fans from across the country feel on this terrible weekend for English football but one message is certain and rightfully being driven into the nation. Pray for Muamba.