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March 28, 2020 at 7:02 AMKCEE
Former Ajax midfielder Abdelhak Nouri has returned home and is now being treated at home after spending nearly three years in a coma, according to his family.
Nouri suffered a cardiac arrhythmia attack on the pitch during a July 2017 friendly, sustaining severe and permanent brain damage caused by a lack of oxygen supply.
The 22-year-old woke up a year later but was left unable to move or communicate for himself.
However, during a special edition of Dutch television show, De Wereld Draait Door, Abderrahim Nouri revealed that his brother can now sit up, watch football and convey emotion after moving into a new home, one specifically designed to cater for his needs.
“He has not been home very long, but we take care of him now,” Abderrahim said. “Things are going much better than before in the hospital.
“He is aware of where he is, he is back in a familiar environment with his family. He is no longer in a coma. He’s just awake.
“He sleeps, he sneezes, he eats, he burps, but it’s not like he gets out of bed. He’s very bedridden and still very dependent on us.
“On his good days, there is a form of communication, for example, confirmation with his eyebrows or a smile. But you notice that he can’t last that very long.
“We talk to him like he’s not sick. We take him into our conversations and we watch football with him in the living room, for example.
“Then he watches. You notice that he likes that very much. He often shows emotions. Sometimes he is emotional but often there is also a smile.
“That does us good. That makes you really appreciate a smile.”
Following the tragic event, Ajax later admitted that their on-field treatment of Nouri was “inadequate” and relieved club doctor Don de Winter of his duties.
It was reported that Winter deviated from Uefa’s guidelines and began resuscitation attempts too late, with Ajax chief executive Edwin van der Sar explaining that a defibrillator should “have been used sooner”.
“Had this happened, it’s possible that Appie [Nouri] would have come out in a better condition,” Van de Sar said in a statement. “This isn’t certain, but it’s a possibility.
“We recognise our responsibility and liability for the consequences of this.”
Ajax have now named their Talent of the Future award after Nouri, who was highly thought of before his career was tragically cut short.
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