Fabrice Muamba 'just grateful to be alive' after on-pitch collapse

Fabrice Muamba said he was just happy to be alive when told he would never play football again.

Muamba, 24, collapsed and suffered a cardiac arrest on 17 March during Bolton's FA Cup quarter-final tie with Tottenham Hotspur.

The midfielder announced his retirement from the game in August.

"When told I wouldn't play again I didn't cry, I was just grateful to be alive," the former Bolton midfielder told the BBC's Football Focus show.

Muamba admitted he is still coming to terms with the life-changing events of the past few months.

The former Arsenal player and England Under-21 international finds watching games as a spectator hard but insisted he is positive about the future, and has not ruled out a career in management somewhere down the line.

Emotional Muamba returns to the Reebok Stadium

"I sometimes find it hard to get my head around what has happened," added Muamba.

"It just goes to show that you cannot take life for granted and you should cherish life and your friends because it can all go in a second.

"It is hard to watch games now. I'm sure I'm not the only player who has had to adjust.

"When your time is up you have to accept that it is up and adapt.

"As for the future, I would still like to be involved in sport in some way in 15 years' time."

Asked about a future career as a manager, Muamba said: "All the top managers have one thing in common, most of them have not played for a top team.

"Right now I want to spend some time with the family, learn the game and hopefully take it from there.

"The other side of football is important to learn. When the time is right I'll sit down and speak to the right people."

Owen Coyle was manager of Bolton when Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest and subsequently spent around four weeks in intensive care, before being discharged from hospital on 16 April.

Coyle has since been replaced by Dougie Freedman and Muamba is positive about his former club's chances of winning promotion back to the Premier League.

"They didn't start the season particularly well, but they have the team and they have quality in the squad," he added.