Glenn Hoddle, a former player and manager of ours, says he feels ‘so grateful to still be here’ after suffering a cardiac arrest last year.
Hoddle, who was in charge of Chelsea for three seasons during the 1990s and later managed England, collapsed after appearing as a pundit on BT Sport in October 2018. Thankfully a member of the production crew used first-aid training and a defibrillator in the moments after the incident to save Hoddle’s life.
‘My heart stopped for at least 60 seconds,’ Hoddle told The Sun on Sunday. ‘I was gone. The engineer ran to me and brought me back to life. I wouldn't be here if not for him. It just wasn't my time to go.
‘Robbie [Savage] and I had been playing the 'keepy-uppy' game at the end of the programme. Robbie said that after the credits rolled I was just at the moment of
volleying the ball back to him when I fell backwards and smashed my head on the floor.
‘It's ironic that if I had died, the last thing I would have done on this earth was kick a ball. What a way to go. It could have happened on live TV. The timing of everything on the day was incredible.’
Hoddle, who also played 39 times for the Blues before retiring in 1995, responded well to treatment following surgery and was able to recuperate at home. He paid tribute to Simon Daniels, the engineer who moved so quickly to help him, and he also said his ‘mind has been blown’ by the many messages of support he received after the incident.
‘I was unaware of all the attention and scrutiny about what happened. I am so humbled by it, and grateful,’ added Hoddle, who is helping support a campaign by the British Heart Foundation to get defibrillators bought for grass-roots football clubs across the country.
‘It's uplifting, and getting so many positives has been a big part in my recovery. Despite what happened to me, I feel the luckiest man alive. I'm so grateful to still be here.’