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Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Muamba collapse prompts review

ESPN staff

The Premier League will review its medical procedures following Fabrice Muamba's cardiac arrest on Saturday, chief executive Richard Scudamore has revealed.

• Fabrice Muamba profile
• Muamba showing improvement
• Spurs players demand heart checks
• Coyle grateful for Muamba support
• Muamba in 'critical condition'
• Spurs confirm fixture will go ahead

Muamba received treatment on the pitch after collapsing during Bolton's FA Cup tie against Tottenham before being taken to the London Chest Hospital, where he remains in intensive care. He is now able to "recognise family members and respond to questions".

Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech suffered a fractured skull back in October 2006 which brought about major changes to emergency provisions at Premier League matches, and Scudamore has announced that the Premier League will look to improve policy further.

"Incidents and events shape policy, shape developments, shape progress," Scudamore said. "What we will certainly be doing is looking at every aspect of what happened and if there are ways and means of improving, if there are ways and means of making it better in the future just like we did in 2006-07 following the Petr Cech incident - we will do everything we can to make sure we reduce to the point of elimination, if we possibly can, things like that.

"There are no guarantees but we will do whatever we can to improve."

Cech's injury prompted a Premier League and Football Association assessment which included an ambulance being in place for exclusive use of players and club doctors attending every game. Cech believes his injury helped save Muamba, and Scudamore has admitted Cech's accident was a "wake-up call".

"It's been a difficult three days for everybody involved in the game, particularly those closest to Fabrice," Scudamore said. "The whole of the last three days, we've played out lots of scenarios, clearly.

"Let's hope, God willing, that the progress he's making continues to be made and that he makes as decent a recovery as he can. In some ways, his life, if it is saved - and let's hope it has been saved - is as a result of the things a lot of us put in place after what happened with Petr Cech.

"If you saw what happened on Saturday, the immediate attention, everybody comes out of this with huge credit, the referee, the match officials, the way the medics were there. Jose Mourinho made some strident comments about the treatment that Petr Cech got. Everything that we've put in place since helped Fabrice at least have a chance."

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has demanded twice yearly medical screenings for Premier League players, saying he is concerned not enough is being done to protect them.

"I was really worried on Sunday,'' the Italian said. "Today I have read he has improved and I am very happy for him and his family. But if you want to know my opinion, it is that here in England, the best championship in the world, everything is fantastic.

"But we need to improve the medical side for the players. We need to screen the players often, maybe two times a year and they have to be more accurate because they don't do this. When I saw our medical two years ago, I was really worried. I said we need to do them better.

"It is impossible that a young guy could die on the pitch because they didn't do a medical accurately. I want all the players, not just ours, to have more accurate medicals.

"And always, not once a year. Every six months. This is really important for the players because it is totally different today than it was 20 years ago. It is very important.

"What happened to Muamba and other players in the past can't happen again.''




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