Tragedy struck Nigerian Football on Sunday following the news that a Nasarawa United player is dead after he slumped in the NPFL clash against Katsina United.
The player named Chineme Martins reportedly collapsed on the pitch in the 3-0 win over Katsina United on Sunday afternoon.
Although he was rushed to the hospital, he gave up the ghost on arrival. However, according to an eye witness, things could have been different if the Peugeot 406 Ambulance stationed for emergency had started on time.
According to reports made available to Soccernet, the car failed to start and had to be pushed as Martins battled for his life on the pitch.
The press crew bus was eventually used to convey the player to the hospital, but by that time, it was too late as he ran out of breath at the hospital.
Rivers United FC commiserates with @NasarawaUnited over the extremely sad news coming out from Lafia today over the passing of Chieme Martins today in a league game.
— Rivers United FC (@RiversUnitedFC) March 8, 2020
Speaking on the tragic incident, the chairman of Katsina United Prince Abdulsamad said: “There was no collision, Martins just fell on ground while standing alone.”
AGONY! Nasarawa United players in tears after Chieme Martins was confirmed dead after Sunday’s NPFL clash vs Katsina United. Martins slumped following a collision, however, he gave up the ghost stranded as the Peugeot 406 ambulance stationed match venue did not start 😭🕯️😭😭🕯️ pic.twitter.com/PbIms2NkXP
— Shina Oludare 🇳🇬 (@sportingshina) March 8, 2020
Nasarawa United players found it difficult to take the news of Martins death as they were in tears. The League Management Committee (LMC) in a statement attributed to the chairman, Shehu Dikko, commiserates with Nasarawa United and the family of Martins.
“We commiserate with Nasarawa United and the immediate family of the late player”, Dikko said.
The LMC expects that there would be a standard autopsy to establish the cause of the player’s death.
“It is hoped that the findings of the autopsy would inform subsequent measures, if any that has not been addressed by the existing standard procedure”, the LMC stated.
Furthermore, the LMC will keep engaging the club and the players immediate family to find the best way possible to offer support in this sad moment for the family and the Nigeria football family at large.