Livorno midfielder Piermario Morosini collapsed on the pitch after going into cardiac arrest during the 31st minute of the Serie B match against Pescara on Saturday. Medical staff were called onto the field and attempted to resuscitate the 25-year-old, but were not successful.
Based upon statements from the cardiologist at Pescara's Santo Spirito hospital, Edoardo De Blasio, Morosini was D.O.A.
"Unfortunately, he was already dead when he arrived at hospital," De Blasio said. "He didn't regain consciousness."
The match was soon abandoned as players left the pitch grieve-stricken.
''He looked at me in the eyes when he was taken into the ambulance,'' Pescara's general manager, Danilo Iannascoli, said to Sky Italia. ''We are living through a drama.''
To make matters more complex, the approaching ambulance was held up by a police vehicle blocking it's path into the pitch. Medical personnel used a difibrilator on Morosini during the extended time.
''I don't know if the ambulance was late, but I know that the entrance onto the pitch was blocked by a vehicle,'' Iannascoli said. ''Morosini collapsed, he tried to get back up but then collapsed again.''
Pescara president Daniele Sebastiani said that Morosini suffered "three cardiac arrests in quick succession." The midfielder tried to get back up repeatedly after his first fall, while his teammates tried to get the attention of the referees.
All Italian matches across all divisions scheduled for the rest of the weekend have been suspended until further notice. It was just four weeks ago when Bolton's Fabrice Muamba survived a cardiac arrest on the pitch during an FA Cup match.