Tottenham confirm Stoke match will go ahead


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The Independent Football

Tottenham have confirmed that their home game against Stoke on Wednesday will go ahead as planned.

Saturday's FA Cup quarter-final against Bolton was called off after 41 minutes following the sudden collapse of Trotters midfielder Fabrice Muamba, who is now critically ill in a London hospital after undergoing a cardiac arrest during the game.

Some Spurs players were visibly upset at the 23-year-old's collapse, but the club have confirmed that they have no plans to postpone their Barclays Premier League game against Tony Pulis' men because of the incident.

A Spurs statement read: "The club can confirm that Wednesday evening's Premier League fixture against Stoke City at White Hart Lane will go ahead as scheduled, kicking off at 7.45pm."

The statement continued: "The thoughts of everyone at the club continue to be with Fabrice Muamba, his family and Bolton Wanderers at this difficult time."

Spurs Striker Jermain Defoe was left in tears at seeing his friend collapse on the pitch and visited him at the London Chest Hospital in Bethnal Green yesterday to wish him well.

Defoe's team-mate Rafael van der Vaart described the incident as an "absolute low in my career" while other players were seen praying for the former Arsenal man as he lay receiving treatment on the pitch.

Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp admits some of his squad may take time to get over the tragic incident, but says the club will offer any assistance they can to help them.

"What happened on Saturday to Fabrice Muamba was a shock to everyone," Redknapp told Tottenham's website.

"It is possible that the effects of this could hit some quicker than others and, despite these difficult circumstances, we all have to pull together and carry on with our season.

"We will be providing players with whatever support they need in order to help them move on from what has happened, while obviously always keeping Fabrice at the forefront of our minds and willing him to make a recovery."

Redknapp also confirmed that any Spurs player who wants their heart screening will be able to do so at the club's training ground in Chigwell today.

"Fortunately, we already had a cardiologist visiting the training ground today for routine screening, so we are able to offer any player who wishes to be tested for the purpose of reassurance an additional opportunity to be screened," the 65-year-old said.