All of football is rooting for you, Fabrice

Emotional: Bolton skipper Kevin Davies.

Emotional: Bolton skipper Kevin Davies.

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SHEFFIELD-born Kevin Davies, captain of Bolton Wanderers, has spoken about his feelings following the dramatic illness suffered by team-mate Fabrice Muamba.

Muamba’s heart condition is “showing small signs of improvement” following his cardiac arrest during the game with Spurs on Saturday.

Davies, a former Chesterfield player, said of his own state of mind: “It is painful, especially when it is someone you’ve known for years. He is naturally fit. He is well respected. He works extremely hard every day. He is one of the most mature players. He does all the right things, before, during and after training. “He looks after himself on the pitch. For this kind of thing to happen to someone like that is a big shock.

“It just makes you appreciate life a little bit more. It is pretty sad that it takes something like that to trigger it. Sometimes you sulk around. I have been sulking at times because I have not been in the side. But when something like that happens it puts everything into perspective.”

Davies, 34, admitted the impact had been profound.

“With what we all witnessed on the day, you are half expecting a phone call with bad news. We are all amazed that Fab is still in there fighting.

“You stand there on the sidelines and there is nothing you can do. I was just, along with everybody else in the stadium, willing him to pull through and fight it. He is doing that. He has suffered a lot of stress and trauma. To be in there fighting, we are all hopeful that he can keep doing it.”

Davies said his team-mate is a family man. “He has got his young son. He has recently got engaged. He has been planning for the wedding next year.

“He is very passionate about his family, his football and his friends. He is a great guy. We are just hopeful he can come back and do all those things that he is planning.”

Davies said Muamba had previously been “screened quite regularly.”

“I was speaking to the specialist. Sometimes, he may have a normal functioning heart but he may have picked up a virus which can trigger it off. It sometimes happens with sports people. Because they are so fit, when they pick something up then tend not to notice because they are so fit and can shake it off. Players are so well looked after in this day and age.

“You have to go through certain things in hospital. People don’t just come along and bang your knee to test your reflexes. You have all the scans. We are all hopeful in the next day or two we will have some positive news and he can start to make a recovery. We can’t think any further than that really. We don’t know what is happening the next hour, let alone the next day.”