FORMER England football manager Glenn Hoddle has donated defibrillators to three clubs in the North East.

Birtley Town FC in County Durham, North Sunderland FC in Seahouses, and Walker Central FC in Newcastle have all been given the portable devices to help in case of a life-threatening emergency.

In October 2018, Hoddle – who has two FA Cup and UEFA cups wins under his belt – collapsed suddenly in the BT sports studio as he suffered a cardiac arrest. Sound engineer Simon Daniels raced to his side and performed CPR to keep him alive until paramedics arrived.

Hoddle has since teamed up with the British Heart Foundation and to donate defibrillators to seven football clubs around the country.

He said: “It’s been an honour being able to fund these defibrillators. My experience of having a cardiac arrest has changed my life. Had it not been for Simon who performed CPR on me, I wouldn’t be here and I would have missed out on so many incredible things. Although I hope they will never be used, I’ve donated these defibrillators so that more lives can be saved, just as mine was.”

Defibrillators are a portable device that can be used by anyone to help restart the heart when someone has a cardiac arrest. Cardiac arrests are when the heart stops pumping blood around the body, which causes the person to lose consciousness. Without defibrillation and CPR, chances of survival decrease by around ten percent per minute.

Inspired by Hoddle's story and his generous donation to the club, chairman Richie Barrett of Birtley Town FC said: “We are hugely grateful for the defibrillator that Glenn has donated to our club, and for sharing his experience of receiving CPR that saved his life.

“When your heart stops, every second counts. Knowing that we are in a position to help if one of our fans, players or visitors has a cardiac arrest is so important.”

David Moor, Chair of North Sunderland FC said: “We were absolutely stunned to have received this award. It is something that is very dear to us here in North Northumberland. On behalf of North Sunderland Football Club, I would like to personally thank Mr Hoddle for his most generous donation.”