An ex-Real Madrid star is credited with helping save the life of an opponent who suffered a mid-match heart attack

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An ex-Real Madrid star is credited with helping save the life of an opponent who suffered a mid-match heart attack
James Rodriguez.Getty/
  • A soccer player in Qatar has been hailed a hero after helping to save the life of an opponent.
  • James Rodriguez is credited with keeping Ousmane Coulibaly's airway open after he suffered a heart attack.

The former Real Madrid and Bayern Munich midfielder James Rodriguez has been hailed as a hero after he helped to save the life of an opponent who had suffered a heart attack during a match.

Rodriguez, who now plays in Qatar for Al-Rayyan, sprang into action when Al-Wakrah's Ousmane Coulibaly collapsed on the pitch during the first half of a league match last weekend.

According to beIN Sports USA, the Colombian adjusted Coulibaly's head to ensure that his airway remained open before medics arrived to continue the treatment.

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The match was abandoned with the scoreline 1-0 to Al Rayyan. Coulibaly, 32, was taken to hospital where he remains in a stable condition.

"Thank you for your messages of support and love, Ousmane is in stable condition due to his heart attack, he regains consciousness slowly but surely. He is in very good hands," said a statement on the Malian's Instagram, which was written by his wife.

"Many thanks to God and the doctor who saved my husband's life!"

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A post shared by Ousmane Coulibaly (@ousmanecoulibaly23)

The match was rescheduled to Monday, January 10. Ahead of kick-off, the medical officials who helped save Coulibaly's life were given a guard of honor by both sides as well as members from the Qatar Stars League.

Both sets of players also held up shirts from each team with Coulibaly's name and number on.

Al-Rayyan went on to win the match 3-0, with Rodriguez scoring twice.

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