Owen Coyle to lead thanks to Tottenham fans
Tuesday 27 March 2012
Bolton manager Owen Coyle will lead the thanks to Tottenham for their impeccable behaviour after Fabrice Muamba's cardiac arrest when the two sides play their re-arranged FA Cup quarter-final at White Hart Lane tonight.
More positive news on Muamba's recovery at the London Chest Hospital means Bolton's players should approach the game with a reduced amount of the tension that might have been expected on a return to the ground where they endured such horrors 10 days ago.
But, keen as he is to win, Coyle will not forget the instant reaction from the stands.
"Sometimes you think 'what is normal'," he said.
"We are engrossed in this football world. When events like that transpire, you think 'hold on a minute' and get a different perspective.
"Tottenham is going to be another very emotional night.
"But it gives both teams an opportunity to thank both wonderful sets of fans for their reaction to what happened and the aftermath.
"We all expected the Bolton fans to shout for Fabrice to recover. But the Tottenham fans seemed to get a sixth sense with the exact same response.
"There was a real sense of unity. Fabrice's family felt the energy and I have no doubt that has played a part in his recovery."
Both teams' shirts will be auctioned off after the game to raise money for the London Chest Hospital.
And whilst there will be no opportunity to watch the action on Match of the Day, as Muamba did on Sunday to see Bolton beat Blackburn and the tributes in his honour, he will have a brief meeting with a small delegation from the Lancashire club, including Coyle, chairman Phil Gartside and a couple of players.
Such visits are crucial, according to the Bolton boss, for the morale within his squad.
"Everyone would want to be there but that would be impossible," said Coyle.
"Fabrice's recovery is paramount but the players who do go can filter back the news. That will help.
"Fabrice is not just a team-mate and a colleague. He is a dear friend to those lads. They want to know he is getting better."
To that end, the latest statement on Muamba's health provided a huge lift.
"Fabrice Muamba remains in intensive care where his condition is serious but stable," read the statement.
"He continues to make encouraging progress in his recovery.
"Over the weekend, he has been able to sit out of bed for a short time, watch television and has begun to eat.
"However, he will need to continue to be closely monitored by the medical team at The London Chest for some time."
Simon Calder looks at communities fighting back against the poachers
Arsenal 1 Everton 1: Substitute equalises with six minutes to go
Latest in Sport
Sam Wallace: David Moyes is paying the price of United’s virtual abstinence from top-level transfers since 2006. Can he refire their ambition?
Arsenal 1 Everton 1 match report: Gerard Deulofeu provides late sucker punch after Mesut Ozil's opener
I will not be forced into panic buys at Manchester United, says David Moyes
Gerard Deulofeu - Why Barcelona chose Everton to educate their latest prodigy
Ashes 2013-14 match report: Another woeful display sees England lose to Australia by 218 runs to go down 2-0
- 1 Turning up the voice of America
- 2 The poorest pay the price for austerity: Workers face biggest fall in living standards since Victorian era
- 3 The man who made Femen: New film outs Victor Svyatski as the mastermind behind the protest group and its breast-baring stunts
- 4 An obsessive’s documenting of Israeli war crimes in Lebanon can show us how the West lost respect for international law
- 5 Mass murder in the Middle East is funded by our friends the Saudis