Ronaldo's fit caused hotel panic
Posted: Tuesday September 15, 1998 07:58 PM
Ronaldo reportedly swallowed his tongue during his convulsions Stu Forster/Allsport|
PARIS (CNN/SI) -- Cries of "he's dead, he's dead" filled the Brazil team
hotel after Ronaldo was found having a convulsive fit on Sunday, the hotel
director said in a radio interview on Wednesday.
Ronaldo became sick in his team's hotel on the outskirts of Paris just
hours before the World Cup final, and he had to be rushed to a hospital.
Later, he played poorly against France in
Brazil's 3-0 win.
"There was general alarm with yells and shouts which woke up all the
players, who were in the middle of their siesta," hotel director Paul
Chevalier told France Info radio station.
"For a time we heard people saying 'he's dead, dead, dead'," Chevalier
added. "It created a terrible atmosphere around the team which was clearly
demonstrated later on the pitch."
The 21-year old striker said later he had feared for his life during the
brief fit. Ronaldo reportedly swallowed his tongue during the convulsions.
He was taken to a hospital to be examined and later joined the Brazil
squad at the Stade de France. He was controversially included in the team
for the final, after initially being omitted, but failed to produce
anything like his normal form.
"I suppose Ronaldo's nerves broke. He has been under dreadful pressure
and he is young," Chevalier said.
Normally when the Brazilians left for their matches there was a party
atmosphere with singing and music, but the mood before Sunday's final was
completely opposite that.
"When they left the hotel at 6:00 or 6:30 for the Stade de France there
was complete silence on the bus and we who knew them personally understood
at that moment that there was no cohesion and they had lost the cup,"
Chevalier said. Brazil had been based in the Chateau de la Grande
Romanie hotel in the village of Lesigny since May 22.
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Reuters contributed to this report.