Daley Blind Hits Back At Pundits Saying Christian Eriksen Won't Play Again, Tells Them To 'Leave Him Alone'
The Inter Milan midfielder collapsed on the pitch during Denmark's Euro 2020 game against Finland and had to be resuscitated on the pitch in some incredibly frightening scenes in Copenhagen.
Eriksen came back around and was discharged from hospital on Friday after being fitted with a implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) following advice from a number of heart specialists.
The images of Eriksen on the deck, with players and fans in utter panic, were incredibly difficult for everyone to watch - especially Blind.
The 31-year-old played with Eriksen at Ajax and has had heart problems of his own - having collapsed twice in 2019.
In December of 2019, Blind was diagnosed with heart muscle inflammation after suffering from dizziness in a Champions League tie against La Liga side Valencia.
Then, a few months later, with just 10 minutes remaining in a pre-season friendly against Hertha Berlin, Blind suffered another major scare when he required medical attention after suddenly collapsing on the ground with nobody around him.
Having watched the events a week ago, Blind admitted he considered not playing for the Netherlands against Ukraine a day after from the horrific incident and left the field in tears.
Daley Blind is an incredible footballer. A Warrior of men. I can watch him for days.- Isiah Madrigal (@Realisiah1) June 13, 2021
Simple but effective player :flag_nl::muscle: pic.twitter.com/STJu6J4kWU
Like Eriksen, Blind had a heart starter fitted and it's allowed him to continue playing for both club and country.
Despite many raising doubts, the former Manchester United man is optimistic that Eriksen will play again.
"The images from Copenhagen - with Christian lying on the grass - had such a big impact on me," he said, as per Metro.
"Those images were so recognisable to me. It was so real again, this is why it was so emotional for me.
"When this happened to me, the whole world was telling me I was finished as a player, that I would not be able to play again.
"Look where I am today. This is why I say to everyone, 'Leave Christian alone!'.
"I had to climb over a big, mental hurdle before I could manage to play the following day for Holland in our first group game.
"All the emotions came out. I am proud of myself that I managed to play for so long in that game. I did it, but it was hard.
"There was no reason why I could not play at the top level again. The most important thing is that you have to feel free in your head.
"I had no fear. I was just incredibly happy that I was allowed to be part of the squad again and to be back in the team.
"Once the doctors tell you that you are OK to play again, you only feel the tension and excitement of playing, not the tension of fear."
Sanjay Sharma, professor of sports cardiology at St George's University in London, recently said there will be "strict protocols in place" to prevent Eriksen from returning to the pitch.
It's been revealed that Eriksen's first words after life-saving CPR brought him were, "Yes I am back with you... For f***s sake, I'm only 29," after German doctor Jens Kleinefeld asked him the all-important question.
"About 30 seconds later, the player opened his eyes and I could talk to him directly," Kleinefeld recalled in an interview with Fox Sports.
"That was a very moving moment, because in such medical emergencies in everyday life, the chances of success are much lower."
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