Match abandoned as top flight international footballer collapses on field

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A football match in Italy was abandoned after a player collapsed on the pitch on Sunday.

A Serie A game between Udinese and AS Roma was abandoned at the weekend after a Roma star, Evan Ndicka, collapsed on the pitch and was taken off the field on a stretcher.

Ndicka, 24, fell onto his back under no pressure and required assistance to leave the field of play. After a ten minute period where both teams and the officials discussed what action should be taken, referee Luca Pairetto suspended the game. His decision was met with applause from both sets of supporters in attendance - the rest of the game will now be played at a later date.

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Ndicka appeared to be conscious while he was leaving the pitch - he is now in a stable condition in hospital, with a Roma spokesperson saying he is ‘in good spirits’ and is ‘feeling better’. Despite this, he will be required to remain in hospital so ‘further observations’ can be conducted on the player.

At the time of the incident, the match was tied at 1-1. Udinese initially took the lead when Roberto Pereyra scored after an incisive counter attack - Romelu Lukaku went on to level the scores in the second half with a towering header.

A recent statement on Roma’s official club website reads: “Following the on-field medical emergency involving Evan Ndicka, the match between Udinese and Roma was suspended in the 71st minute.

“The squad went to visit Ndicka at the hospital. Evan is feeling better and is in good spirits. He will remain in the hospital for further observations. Forza Evan!”

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Ndicka signed for Roma in the summer of 2023, having made 19 Serie A appearances for La Lupa since then. Before making the jump to Italy, he had previously played for Auxerre and Eintracht Frankfurt. Additionally, he has also made 14 appearances on the international stage for the Ivory Coast.

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