Manchester

Bolton fans stage Fabrice Muamba mosaic tribute

A mosaic spelling out the name and shirt number of Fabrice Muamba has been displayed by Bolton fans at the team's home game against Blackburn.

Muamba, 23, is still in hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest during Bolton's FA Cup tie with Tottenham at White Hart Lane last Saturday.

Fans in the lower tier of the Nat Lofthouse stand at the Reebok Stadium raised posters reading "Muamba 6".

A get well message was shown on the big screen as supporters chanted his name.

The screen had earlier shown a video compilation of Muamba's career in the build up to the game.

'Terrific atmosphere'

Players from both teams wore shirts with "Muamba 6" on their backs during their pre-match warm-ups.

Former Bolton midfielder and England player Peter Reid told BBC Radio 5 live "it was very very moving".

He said: "Both sets of fans, the Bolton Wanderers and Blackburn fans were absolutely amazing.

"The atmosphere here is terrific, it's the best atmosphere I've ever seen at the Reebok."

Bolton's scheduled Premier League match away at Aston Villa on Tuesday was postponed following the midfielder's collapse.

Football shirt and scarf tributes were left outside Bolton's ground throughout the week.

Muamba's father Marcel and fiancee Shauna Magunda released a joint statement on Friday about the player's condition.

It said: "Even though Fabrice has made great progress over the last couple of days, he is still in intensive care and still has a long period of recovery ahead."

"He has asked that you please keep him in your prayers."

'Trying circumstances'

Bolton chairman Phil Gartside said before the game that Muamba could remain with the club "as long as he wants".

"He will be here as long as he wants to be," he said.

"It is all about Fabrice. It is not a football story. It is a Muamba story."

Bolton manager Owen Coyle, who named an unchanged team from the club's last Premier League fixture, said the game against Blackburn would be "trying circumstances for everyone".

He said: "We are a tight-knit group of players. We are trying to build a family club here and Fabrice is a huge part of that.

"We have to be proud that we are at a fantastic club and do ourselves justice in football terms, knowing our thoughts will be with Fabrice."

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