A former Tottenham Hotspur youth academy player who suffered a heart attack during his first match with the club has won a high court case against the club and will be awarded compensation.
Radwan Hamed suffered a cardiac incident mere days after signing with Spurs in 2006, similar to the incident suffered by Fabrice Muamba. Unlike Muamba, Hamed suffered severe and long-lasting brain damage. Hamed then filed suit against the club for negligence, claiming Spurs' medical staff had not properly warned him about irregularities in his medical check-ups that indicated a problem with his heart. The High Court agreed, awarding Hamed between £5-7m in damages. From the court's findings:
"The club owed a duty of care to the claimant as a result of both the doctor/patient and employer/employee relationship. With regard to the former, the club doctors were not only in effect the claimant's general practitioners, but specialist sports physicians who were - or should have been - well-acquainted with the cardiac risk faced by young athletes.
In addition to the usual obligations of a doctor to a patient, the FA protocol placed an obligation upon them to ensure that the claimant and his parents were made aware of any risk that the claimant faced.
It was their responsibility, as specialist physicians and employers, to ensure that relevant risks were identified and communicated to the claimant and his parents to enable them to make an informed decision as to whether to bear them. In this, they singularly failed."
Despite losing the court battle, the club and Hamed's lawyers agreed during the trial that the renumeration would take place through Tottenham's insurance policy, meaning the club itself would not be at risk for compensation to Hamed.
If there's a positive to come out of a tragedy such as this one, this is probably it. Ignore for a minute any judgement against the club or possible anger at Hamed for bringing forward a case from nearly ten years ago: a young player suffered a terrible injury while signed to Tottenham Hotspur, and he will now receive funds needed to help his life move forward. All indications are that Tottenham has, despite the lawsuit, been supportive of Hamed over the past 9 years. By putting this into the realm of an insurance claim, Hamed now gets his monetary assistance, the club is not directly impacted, and everyone can walk away, if not happy, at least satisfied that by some small measure justice has been done.