Ajax’s Abdelhak Nouri Suffers Permanent Brain Damage After Collapsing In Game
AFC Ajax midfielder Abdelhak Nouri has been left with permanent brain damage after collapsing during a pre-season friendly game on Saturday.
Abdelhak Nouri Ajak brain damage
The promising 20-year-old Dutch star began suffering from “cardiac arrhythmias” (heart rhythm problems) during the game against Werder Bremen.
Nouri was placed in an induced coma at a hospital in Austria following the game.
“#Ajax are deeply saddened by the news that Appie Nouri has been diagnosed with serious and permanent brain damage,” tweeted the Amsterdam club. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to him and his loved ones in this difficult time.”
Our thoughts and prayers go out to him and his loved ones in this difficult time. (2/2)#StayStrongAppie
— AFC Ajax (English) (@AFCAjax_EN) July 13, 2017
The midfielder played 15 league and cup games for Ajax in 2016-2017, and scored one goal in a Dutch Cup tie.
On Monday, the club said initial tests showed Nouri’s heart was “functioning normally” and that brain scans did not reveal “any anomalies,” but then new tests displayed the extent of the damage.
Nouri — who was born in Amsterdam to parents of Moroccan descent — has played for the Netherlands’ Under-15, 16, 17, 18, 19 and 20 teams, and was expected to compete with the under-21 team later this year.
Ajax finished second to Feyenoord, while the Dutch club lost to Manchester United 2-0 in the Europa League final in May.
Former Manchester United and Fulham goalkeeper Edwin van der Sar, now CEO at Ajax, said: “This is the worst possible message. It is terrible. We feel enormously for his parents, siblings and other relatives.
Van der Sar continued: “The blow is also difficult for Ajax, though we knew we had to consider this scenario,” he said. “They were uncertain days, lots of people in different ways have sympathised with his situation and is greatly appreciated.
“Abdelhak is such a great talent, but unfortunately we will never know how far his star would have reached had this not happened. ”
Several notable European players took to social media to offer their support for Nouri’s friends and family:
— Robin van Persie (@Persie_Official) July 13, 2017
What a terrible news.. My thoughts and prayers go out to Abdelhak Nouri, his family, his friends and to Afc Ajax.
— Ruud van Nistelrooy (@RvN1776) July 13, 2017
AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS – NOVEMBER 24: Abdelhak Nouri of Ajax in action during the UEFA Europa League Group G match between AFC Ajax and Panathinaikos FC at Amsterdam Arena on November 24, 2016 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)