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Newcastle fan who collapsed at Tottenham game ‘fully alert’ as family thank medical staff and players

·2-min read
Newcastle fan who collapsed at Tottenham game ‘fully alert’ as family thank medical staff and players

The Newcastle fan who collapsed during Sunday’s Premier League match with Tottenham is “fully alert” and recovering in hospital, his family have confirmed.

Play was suspended when 80-year-old Alan George Smith required urgent medical care in the St James’ Park stands, with a number of players calling for support after being alerted to the incident.

A defibrillator was carried across the pitch to stabilise Mr Smith, before he was transferred to the city’s Royal Victoria Infirmary and then to a specialist unit at the Freeman Hospital.

In a statement released by his son, Paul, the Smith family thanked the medical staff, fans and players for their response.

It read: "We are pleased to advise that Alan is making great progress, is now fully alert and is up and walking about. He will remain in hospital over the next few days while further tests are carried out.

"He and our family would like to say thank you to his friend, Don Williamson, who was with him at the time and alerted everyone to his condition.

"We would also like to thank and pay tribute to the doctors and nurses who administered CPR, the paramedics from North East Ambulance Service, St John’s Ambulance, fans and stewards at the scene, as well the medical staff at the RVI and Freeman Hospital. We will be forever grateful.

"We would also like to say thank you to all of the people who have wished Alan well on social media and the players and staff of both Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur, especially Jamaal Lascelles who has sent a personal message. It meant so much to Alan.

"He is looking forward to getting back to St. James’ Park as soon as possible."

Eric Dier gets help during the emergency at St James’ Park (Action Images via Reuters)
Eric Dier gets help during the emergency at St James’ Park (Action Images via Reuters)

The game was paused for 20 minutes and the pitch cleared as Mr Smith received attention, including from A&E doctor Tom Pritchard, a fellow Newcastle fan.

Dr Pritchard told the BBC: “It wasn’t just me. [There was] a friend helping out, another doctor, and the other two doctors there.

“St John’s were brilliant and the club doctor came over to lend a hand. When I was walking back to my seat and 10,000 fans in the Gallowgate [End] were chanting ‘hero’ at me, that was one of the best moments of my life.”

Tottenham defender Eric Dier, among the first players to spot the incident in the stands, praised the quick response of the emergency staff.

He told Standard Sport: “There was a medical professional there who was with the fan really quickly and all the medical staff were there so quickly. They deserve all the credit.”

Read More

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