Muamba case may mean more checks

ENGLISH football’s top doctor says players could be screened for heart irregularities more frequently following Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba’s on-field cardiac arrest.

Dr Ian Beasley, the Football Association’s head of medical services, warned fresh funds would have to be raised if checks were to increase.

But he suggested the government could pick up the tab, if it could be shown the tests were worthwhile for the wider population as well.

“There is some feeling in football that players should be screened more. That is something we would have to work out how to fund,” he said.

“Whether that is from the Premier League or from a national institution, is something to be decided later on.

“If it was decided by government that screening in young people was beneficial and saved enough lives then the government should think about funding it.”

Muamba was last night still recovering at the London Chest Hospital, where he has regained consciousness and is slowly improving. The 23-year-old’s heart stopped during Saturday’s FA Cup tie at Tottenham, and was only revived 80 minutes later when he arrived at hospital.

Bolton will play their first match since the incident tomorrow when they host fellow relegation candidates Blackburn.