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20 March 2012, 10:18
Bolton footballer Fabrice Muamba, is said to be showing ‘positive signs’ of improvement and is now ‘breathing independently’, according to his club.
The 23-year-old is spending his fourth day in intensive care at the London Chest Hospital after collapsing during an FA Cup match on Saturday.
But Bolton Wanderers Football Club said last night that he was continuing to show signs of improvement and has been able to recognise family members and respond to questions.
A joint statement by the club and the hospital trust said: “Fabrice Muamba remains in intensive care at the London Chest Hospital. He is continuing to show signs of improvement this evening.
“He is currently able to breathe independently without the aid of a ventilator. He has also been able to recognise family members and respond to questions appropriately.
“These are all positive signs of progress. However, his condition remains serious and our medical staff in intensive care will continue to monitor and treat him.
It was also confirmed that his heart started beating without the aid of medication and he had begun to move his arms and legs of his own accord.
Muamba collapsed on the pitch at 6.11pm as Bolton Wanderers played Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane during an FA Cup quarter-final clash.
Paramedics desperately tried to resuscitate him but it was almost two hours before medics were able to get the midfielder's heart beating on its own.
A string of visitors from the football world - including Chelsea defender Ashley Cole, QPR's Shaun Wright-Phillips and former team-mate and Arsenal player Johan Djourou - arrived at the hospital yesterday to offer their support.
Muamba's fiancee, who goes by the name Shauna Muamba on Twitter and is mother to their son Joshua, has left a series of messages on the social networking site.
“2 everyone out there thank u so much for all the love and support collectively as a family we appreciate it all. Plz continue 2 pray 4 fab x,” she wrote.
She added late last night: “Fabrice has felt every single prayer guys you've been INCREDIBLE!!!. Thank u all so so much I love and appreciate u all. Thank u again xx”.
On Valentine's Day she told followers she had accepted the player's marriage proposal.
His club has postponed its next fixture - a Premier League tie against Aston Villa - which was due to take place tonight.