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'I didn't have oxygen to my brain for 70 minutes'

Fabrice Muamba

In March 2012, Fabrice Muamba collapsed on the pitch while playing for Bolton against Tottenham in the Emirates FA Cup.

Speaking exclusively to our 'In Lockdown' podcast, the former Gunner shared the incredible story of his survival - despite his heart stopping for 78 minutes.
 
"I was fortunate that I had the best medical staff that day," Muamba said.  "They were able to come in and work under extreme pressure to be able to get me from the stadium to the hospital and still do CPR, which worked.

 
"I think that made a huge, huge difference. I had an ambulance 10 seconds away from me, I had four doctors 10 seconds away from me. All those guys came together and worked together and did a good job.
 
"I have been given a chance first of all to be alive and to see my kids. It's huge for me and truth be told I should be six feet under right now. For me to still be here, get up in the morning, play with my children... forget about football, just being able to breathe - you take it for granted.
 
"When you're on the other side of it you really appreciate it. It's the little things and for me I'm thankful and I'm grateful every single day for every single thing I have right now to be honest.
 
"I know people who have been in a similar circumstance as me but they came out much worse than me. You have to remember I didn't have any oxygen to my brain for 70-odd minutes. When you don't have oxygen for over 70 minutes you should be severely brain-damaged but I'm not anything like that.
"I know people who had a heart attack for 10 minutes and they're in a worse condition than me. For me, I enjoy everything and I don't take anything for granted. People on the medical side have been great to me so I can't complain at all."

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