Stoke City youngster James Alabi, currently on loan at League Two side Scunthorpe United, has offered his backing to the Hear4More Foundation and its aims to ensure regular heart screenings in the professional game.
The Foundation was set up by former professional footballer Tobi Alabi, 20, who collapsed during a football match on October 15, 2013 and was subsequently forced to retire after having a heart monitor implanted in his chest.
The 19-year-old has had loan spells with Scunthorpe United, Mansfield Town and Forest Green Rovers and believes the Foundation will save lives.
James said: “I think the Heart4More Foundation is a great project and it will surely help a lot of people.
“I was shocked and really felt for Tobi when I heard of his retirement because I knew he had a bright future in the game.
“After what happened to Tobi, I think it is crucial that players are regularly screened as it is better to know beforehand than go through what he has.”
With less than two weeks to go before the deadline, the Foundation has raised approximately half of the target with £3,300 donated. However, the full target of £7,000 must be achieved by Tuesday 25 March for it to be funded.
Striker James is encouraging football fans to donate to the cause to help prevent any potential tragedies from occurring.
“I think screening young people is another great thought to do because it can help a lot of people and change lives.”
Tobi said: “It’s great to have James backing the Heart4More Foundation and calling for regular screenings at a professional level.
“James is at a Stoke City but has gained experience with loan spells in League One, League Two and also the Conference, which reinforces the Foundation’s aims not to just target the elite level of players but others in the football pyramid.”
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