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March 19, 2012

"Where's Josh?" Fabrice Muamba wakes from coma and asks for his son

They were the two words that sparked hope stricken soccer star Fabrice Muamba was pulling back from the brink of death.

And as the midfielder spoke for the first time since he collapsed after a cardiac arrest on Saturday, his delighted fiancée Shauna Magunda announced to worried fans their prayers had been answered.

The 27-year-old, mother of his son Joshua, three, tweeted: “All your prayers are working people thank u so so much. Every prayer makes him stronger. To God be the glory.”

Later she wrote: "Fabrice has felt every single prayer guys you've been INCREDIBLE!!!. Thank u all so so much I love and appreciate u all. Thank u again xx"

Shauna spoke after Bolton favourite Muamba, 23, woke up at 2pm in intensive care, recognised the woman he proposed to on Valentine’s Day and, according to a friend, asked: “Where’s Josh?”

He stunned doctors and his family by coming round 44 hours after his heart stopped during Bolton’s FA Cup tie with Tottenham at White Hart Lane. Muamba also started moving his legs and arms.

There had been fears he may have suffered major brain damage as it was believed he had no heartbeat for seven minutes before medical staff began resuscitating him on the pitch, leaving him starved of oxygen.

But a joint statement released by Bolton and the London Chest Hospital where he is being treated said last night: “Fabrice remains in intensive care and is ­continuing to show signs of ­improvement.

“He is now able to breathe independently, without the aid of a ventilator and he is able to recognise family members and respond to questions ­appropriately. These are ­positive signs of progress.

“His heart is beating without the help of ­medication and he is also moving his arms and legs. However, his long-term prognosis will remain unclear for some time. His condition remains serious and our medical staff will continue to monitor and treat him.”

Muamba’s friend Curtis Codrington told how he had been visiting the player at the hospital in Bethnal Green, East London.

He said: ‘‘There is no doubt in my mind that if it wasn’t for all those people, we wouldn’t even be in this situation.

“We are just thankful to them for giving Fab a bit of hope. The amount of people and doctors running around trying to sort out Fab was amazing.

“It all unfolded so quickly and in a matter of seconds. You feel so powerless, you can’t do anything about it.”
Shauna has been at her fiancé’s bedside since he collapsed.

Before he came round, she had insisted he would survive because he “had God” on his side.

She tweeted: “Fabrice WILL pull through because God is good. Everyone out there thank you so much for all the love and support.

“Collectively as a family we appreciate it all. Please continue to pray for fab.”

Bolton manager Owen Coyle said ­Muamba’s family wanted to thank those from across the ­footballing world who had sent messages of support as the player, whose family fled war-torn Congo when he was 11, fought for his life.

The chauffeur boss said: “He has spoken minimal words in English and French, which is better than nothing.”

Last night, it emerged Muamba’s life may have been saved by a heart specialist who was at Saturday’s game.

Spurs fan Dr Andrew Deaner, a consultant at the London Chest Hospital, ran on to the pitch and began treating him before he was taken away in an ambulance as the distraught players from both sides looked on.

The dad of three is now one of the team looking after the player.

Bolton captain Kevin Davies praised the medical staff whose quick intervention may have saved his team-mate.


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