Muamba incident has echoes of Fadiga's collapse
The trauma Bolton were feeling last night has contributed to a season which they will remember as a desperate one, even if football's prayers are answered and Fabrice Muamba pulls through.
The club learned of the death of one of its legends of the modern era, Gary Speed, in November, and on the field of play Owen Coyle has been forced to maintain the morale of players who know that even if their fight for Premier League survival is successful, there will need to be a re-examination of salaries for the next campaign, with the club's latest accounts showing them £110m in the red.
Long injury lay-offs to Stuart Holden and Lee Chung-yong have also hit them badly.
Muamba's spirit has been unmistakeable amid such troubles. "The kind of player who defies all the stereotypes about footballers," was how one football official who has known him for almost a decade described him yesterday.
By a remarkable coincidence, Bolton have experienced a similar medical trauma before, in 2004, when then-Senegal striker Khalilou Fadiga collapsed on the pitch before a League Cup game, also against Tottenham. Fadiga returned to training 11 days after undergoing surgery to treat a heart problem by implanting an automatic defibrillator and later returned to action.
Latest in Sport
MK Dons 4 Manchester United 0: Emmanuel Frimpong and Edin Dzeko lead the jokes as the internet reacts to humiliating defeat
Paul Scholes: Manchester City were so good against Liverpool I felt like turning the television off
Manchester United transfer news: Daley Blind will only move for 'top price'
Arsenal vs Besiktas match report: Alexis Sanchez scores only goal as Gunners survive night of nerves to qualify for Champions League
Arsenal vs Besiktas player ratings: Alexis Sanchez? Jack Wilshere? Mesut Ozil? Who was the star man at the Emirates Stadium?
- 1 Miley Cyrus' homeless MTV VMAs date, Jesse Helt, is wanted by the police
- 2 Arizona shooting: Gun instructor accidentally killed by nine-year-old girl with Uzi
- 3 Paul Scholes: Manchester City were so good against Liverpool I felt like turning the television off
- 4 Notting Hill Carnival: Woman shares selfie after being ‘punched in face for telling man to stop groping her’
- 5 Pamela Anderson rejects ice bucket challenge because of ALS experiments on animals: 'Mice had holes drilled into their skulls'
Exclusive: We share blame for creating 'jihad generation', says Muslim strategist
Robin Williams Emmys tribute led by Billy Crystal criticised for including 'racist' joke about Muslim woman
The Rotherham child abuse scandal is a tale of apologists, misogyny and double standards
Scottish independence TV debate: Pumped-up Alex Salmond bounces back in bruising second round against Alistair Darling
Do you realise just how foolish the UK looks?
Arizona shooting: Gun instructor accidentally killed by nine-year-old girl with Uzi