UPDATE: The collapse of star soccer player Christian Eriksen on the field Saturday was worse than first believed.
Denmark’s team doctor said Sunday that the player’s heart stopped and that “he was gone” before being resuscitated with a defibrillator at the European Championship.
“He was gone. And we did cardiac resuscitation. And it was cardiac arrest,” said team doctor Morten Boesen. “How close were we? I don’t know. We got him back after one defib. That’s quite fast.”
Eriksen is in stable condition at a Copenhagen hospital and spoke to teammates via video link on Sunday, team officials said.
Boesen also said the 29-year-old Eriksen may not have survived had the game not been played at a major soccer tournament with top-class medical equipment at hand.
EARLIER: A massive global television audience watched in horror today as Christian Eriksen, Denmark’s best player, collapsed on the field just before halftime of his game against Finland.
Eriksen collapsed as he went to take a throw-in, according to reports. He was walking towards the sideline and when the ball was thrown in his direction, it hit him and he fell to the ground.
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Teammates rushed to assist him and frantically called for a medical team. The medics were administering CPR on the field, with the worst possible outcome looking likely at one point. Teammates surrounded him on the field and the crowd in his home stadium in Copenhagen went silent for the 10 minutes he lay prone. ESPN was broadcasting the game to a worldwide audience.
Eriksen was taken to the hospital and stabilized.
A Twitter report from the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) said a crisis meeting has taken place with both teams and match officials. The match was suspended with the score 0-0.
UPDATE: A Twitter post has indicated the game will go on later today.
“Following the request made by players of both teams, UEFA has agreed to restart the match between Denmark and Finland tonight at 20:30 CET (TBC). The last four minutes of the first half will be played, there will then be a 5-minute half-time break followed by the second half.”