Wigan’s Charlie Wyke shows off his life-saving defibrillator in his chest – as he credits Christian Eriksen for giving him the ‘inspiration to get back’ to football nine months after suffering cardiac arrest in training
- Charlie Wyke went into cardiac arrest during Wigan’s training last November
- The attacker was resuscitated by manager Leam Richardson after he collapsed
- Wyke made his return to football after nine months against Birmingham City
Charlie Wyke has credited Christian Eriksen for providing him with the inspiration to return to football after cardiac arrest.
Wigan’s attacker, 29, went into cardiac arrest in training last November, just five months after Eriksen himself collapsed on the pitch during a Euro 2020 match between Denmark and Finland.
Latics manager Leam Richardson resuscitated the attacker after undergoing CPR training just two weeks earlier, along with the rest of Wigan’s management team.
Speak with air sports following his return to football in Wigan’s 1-0 win over Birmingham last weekend, Wyke said Danish midfielder Eriksen was the inspiration for him to return to football before describing Richardson and the club doctor as a ‘hero’ for the save his life.
“I remember being on holiday watching it all happen to Eriksen at the European Championship and thinking ‘you must be so unlucky that that happens to you as a player’ – and four months later it was me,” he said. .
“But Eriksen has inspired me to go back. If he hadn’t made the comeback he has, I wouldn’t have either. I had to see someone else do it to get myself to do it too.”
Wyke also revealed that he has spoken to Fabrice Muamba, who collapsed on the pitch in a 2012 FA Cup match while playing for Bolton Wanderers at Tottenham.
Charlie Wyke revealed his scars in an all-encompassing interview after returning to action for Wigan
“I got a call from Muamba who was great – he said things will get easier and they did.”
The attacker, like Eriksen, has had a defibrillator installed in his chest designed to shock him if he goes into another cardiac arrest. His return to football was delayed in March when the defibrillator went off.
“Will Keane tried to say something to me, and I saw right through him,” he said. “I started to feel dizzy and my defibrillator went off. I went from standing up to lying on the floor in five seconds – the pain was excruciating.
The attacker went into cardiac arrest during training last November and thanks Christian Eriksen for inspiring his return
Wyke said he also spoke to Fabrice Muamba, who collapsed on the pitch in 2012
“It gave me a complete shock of the whole body. It was the worst pain I’ve ever had – it was so traumatic.”
Wyke described the day itself as the “scariest” of his life, revealing that the last thing he remembers was going to Richardson to tell him he was going to collapse.
“The last thing I remember was walking up to the manager to tell him I was going to collapse, but I couldn’t speak my words,” he said. “Then I found out later that it was actually the gaffer that started the CPR process and got me breathing again.”
Christian Eriksen collapsed on the pitch during a Euro 2020 match between Denmark and Finland in Copenhagen
Wigan’s players wore shirts with Wyke’s name and number on the front after he collapsed last year
Wyke returned to action against Birmingham last weekend and assisted the winner of Wigan
Wyke thanks his manager and the club doctor for saving his life.
“My heart stopped for four minutes, which was really scary. I wouldn’t be here right now if it weren’t for the cook and the doctor. It’s my heroes who saved my life,” he said.
Meanwhile, club doctor Jonathan Tobin, who attended to treat Muamba at White Hart Lane 10 years ago in his role as Bolton’s doctor, spoke of his admiration for Wigan manager Richardson and his speed of thinking to resuscitate the attacker.
“I can’t tell you how hard it is to start CPR, not even to recognize cardiac arrest. It’s not like he lay there and didn’t move,” he said.
“So for the gaffer to have the guts, intelligence, and courage to recognize what’s going on and act like he did, it was amazing.”