A 13-year-old boy is fighting for life in hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest during a football match.
Quinton Barham collapsed on the pitch after complaining of feeling unwell during an under-14 cup match on Sunday.
First aiders and an off-duty paramedic gave CPR before an air ambulance arrived at the Bromham Social Centre in Bromham, Wilts.
Medics then re-started Quinton’s heart and he was stabilised before being taken to Bristol Children’s Hospital.
Speaking from his bedside, his dad Paul, 48, said: “He is still critical and still asleep, doctors have kept him that way for now.
“He is still on a life support machine and he is undergoing tests to try and find out what is wrong with him.
“We have been told that his pulmonary artery is in the wrong place, it is in the middle of his two heart chambers rather than going through it.
“Because he was playing football and his heart was working hard to pump the blood it basically crushed the artery which caused the heart attack.”
He added that his son had recently attended a trial for his local professional side Bristol Rovers.
It is believed the football-mad teenager, who had recently had a trial for his local professional side Bristol Rovers, had just scored his third goal when he suddenly felt unwell and complained to his dad of pains in his chest.
Within minutes Quinton, from Trowbridge, Wilts., had collapsed on the side of the pitch and medics performed CPR on the youngster.
It is thought that he was “unstable” for around an hour before doctors managed to regulate his heartbeat.
His cousin, Carla Barham, 21, described the teenager, who is the youngest of four, as a “football mad Man United fanatic” who would do anything for anyone.
Carla, from Melksham, Wilts., said: “The whole thing has come as a big shock because he is so young, no one would ever have thought it would happen to him.
“He is just the most genuine kid you will ever meet and if he can’t play football again he will be absolutely devastated.
“His whole life is football, if he’s not out with his mates playing football then he’s in his room playing Fifa, it’s all he talks about and all he ever wanted to do.
“He is the biggest Man United fan you will ever meet as well, he absolutely adores them.
“He’s just a really cheeky chappy, totally harmless and very lovable.
“Football kept him going, but it also could have been the death of him, it’s so awful.”
Talented player Quinton had undergone a “positive” trial with local side Bristol Rovers only a few months ago and hopes to fulfill his dream playing for a premier league team in the future.
However doctors cannot be sure how much damage the heart attack had caused to his brain and said it would be impossible to tell until much later on.
Paul, his mum Debbie, sisters Toni-Anne and Claire and brother Lathaniel (corr) were all at his bedside yesterday as they awaited the results of a heart scan.
Nick Maw, Chairman of Bradford Town Youth Football Club, Quinton’s current club, said: “The club’s thoughts and prayers are with the boy and his family at this time.
“We are waiting to hear news on the boy’s progress but the emergency services were on the scene within minutes and did a fantastic job.”