The Premier League match between Watford and Chelsea at Vicarage Road was held momentarily after just 13 minutes of play due to a cardiac arrest incident in the crowd. The referee David Coote paused the game after his attention was brought to the emergency in the crowd by Chelsea full-back Marcos Alonso and matchday stewards.
Chelsea entered the mid-week's encounter knowing that a win would strengthen their status as leagues in the Premier League and were eager to stamp their dominance right from the word go. However, 13 minutes into the proceeding, attention was redirected away from the field of play after several fans and players, particularly Marcos Alonso, alerted the match referee and the medical personnel to a growing issue in the stands.
It emerged that a fan had suffered cardiac arrest in one of the upper tier in the stands at the Vicarage Road, and was in need of medical assistance. He was immediately attended to while the players on both sides were made to move into their respective dressing rooms momentarily. Following a little delay, the fan was carried on a stretcher to an ambulance and transported to the hospital. Watford's official Twitter account subsequently released a statement that the supporter had been stabilised.
"The players have returned to the field in preparation of play resuming," the statement read. "Our thoughts are with the fan – who had a cardiac arrest but has now been stabilised – and all those affected. Thank you to the medical staff, players and fans for their quick response."
The players have returned to the field in preparation of play resuming.— Watford Football Club (@WatfordFC) December 1, 2021
Our thoughts are with the fan – who had a cardiac arrest but has now been stabilised – and all those affected.
Thank you to the medical staff, players and fans for their quick response. pic.twitter.com/wa3QfyF0Em
Case of fans in the stands needing medical attention have somewhat become a regular occurance in the Premier League this season. In a seperate incident in the same evening, the match between Leicester City and Southampton at the St Mary's Stadium was also delayed due to a medical emergency in the stands at half-time. Back in October, another emergency with a fan took place during the clash between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur at the St James' Park.