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LONDON Aug 15 Fabrice Muamba has retired from
football on the advice of doctors, his Premier League club
Bolton Wanderers said in a statement on Wednesday.
Muamba, 24, almost died after suffering cardiac arrest in an
FA Cup tie against Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane in March
when he collapsed on the pitch and needed life-saving treatment.
His heart stopped for 78 minutes but the former midfielder
made a remarkable recovery, spending four weeks in an east
Muamba travelled to Belgium last week to seek medical advice
from a leading cardiologist but his hopes of resuming a playing
career were dashed.
"The news I received was obviously not what I had hoped it
would be and it means I am now announcing my retirement from
professional football," Muamba said on the Bolton website
"Since suffering my heart attack and being discharged from
hospital, I have remained utterly positive in the belief I could
one day resume my playing career and play for Bolton Wanderers
"Football has been my life since I was a teenage boy and it
has given me so many opportunities."
Muamba moved to the London borough of Waltham Forest from
the Democratic Republic of Congo when he was 11 and represented
England at every youth level from Under-16 to Under-21.
He also played for Arsenal, where former team mate Robin van
Persie said he always had a "smile on his face" and Birmingham
"Football's lost a good man. It'll be a blow to the kid,"
said former Birmingham boss Alex McLeish.
Bolton manager Owen Coyle also spoke of his admiration for
"Everyone has seen what a fighter and strong person he is in
mind and body.
"We know that he will go on to achieve great things and
within all this disappointment, the most important thing is that
he is here, alive, today," said Coyle.
Muamba jogged with the Olympic torch when the relay reached
the capital's suburbs last month.
"I pay tribute once again to the members of the medical team
who never gave up on me," added Muamba.
(Reporting by Tom Pilcher; Editing by Tom Bartlett)