February 16, 2022 9.43 am

Imps game halted for 25min by medical emergency at LNER Stadium

Play was stopped for around 25 minutes

A “medical emergency” in the crowd at Lincoln City’s game with Doncaster Rovers on Tuesday prompted a temporary halt of proceedings.

Lincoln City were in League One action on Tuesday night, facing the division’s bottom-placed side Doncaster Rovers at the LNER Stadium.

The Imps lost 1-0 to a Dan Gardner penalty in the second half, but the result quickly paled in significance when a fan suddenly fell ill from their seat in the Lincolnshire Co-op stand of the ground.

The game was stopped by referee Benjamin Speedie at around the 65 minute mark after a “medical emergency” in the crowd, which prompted the players to leave the pitch and allow medics to help the person involved.

After around 25 minutes, the players returned to the field and got the game back underway, with the fan reported as being conscious and breathing.

The supporter was taken out of the stadium for further assistance, and there was praise reserved to the swift action of the crowd, officials and medical staff to call the game to a halt and get the fans the attention they needed.

Their condition is as yet unknown, but an eyewitness at the ground said the fan who fell ill waved to the crowd as he was carried away on a stretcher, which can only be a positive sign.

Medical emergencies of this kind have been more prevalent at football matches since the return of supporters following the COVID-19 pandemic, which resulted in the curtailing of the 2019/20 EFL season and almost an entire season being played behind closed doors next campaign.

Imps chief executive Liam Scully said: “The fantastic response from everyone involved helped ensure the fan got the help they needed promptly, I’d particularly like to thank the club’s matchday crowd medical staff led by Andrew Doughty for their exemplary work, as always, as well as Mike Hine and Doncaster’s physio Jonathan Chatfield for getting across to offer assistance.

“The match referee Benjamin Speedie managed the situation well, and supporters of both teams were very respectful during the break in play.

“The reaction time from the fan being taken ill and receiving the medical treatment required was quick and we followed all the protocols very well. Everyone connected with the club can be proud of how they reacted.”