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Bayern Munich’s Daley Blind on playing with a heart condition and ICD

Diagnosed with myocarditis in 2019, the Dutch international has had to play with an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator.

VfL Wolfsburg v FC Bayern München - Bundesliga Photo by Stuart Franklin/Getty Images

When it comes to matters of the heart, the utmost care must be taken. For Bayern Munich’s Daley Blind, that has meant playing with an implantable cardioverter-defibrillator (ICD) since December of 2019. That was when the then-Ajax defender was diagnosed with myocarditis after experiencing “dizziness” during a Champions League match earlier that month.

“It’s a difficult subject, of course. It was a hard time, but I think I managed quite well to come back to the top level, like playing at World Cup or Champions League level,” Blind said in a recent interview provided to BFW courtesy of “I showed the world that we can do it — like [Christian] Eriksen also — we showed that we can do it and that it’s possible.”

Eriksen (formerly of Tottenham, now at Manchester United) was also fitted with an ICD to enable his return to play after suffering a heart attack on the field during Denmark’s EURO run in the summer of 2021. The device monitors the heart and helps regulate the rhythm if the heart beats too fast.

“I hope we inspire a lot of people with maybe the same problems. And of course, it’s something which you have in your daily life. Just when you wake up, you go to the shower, you see it, you think about it,” Blind added. “Sometimes when you’re exhausted, you’re in training or a match, sometimes it passes through your head if everything is okay.

“But I have a very good connection with my medical team and also here at Bayern now. I have real confidence in my body, so I manage to put it in one place in my head and I’m really confident that I can do everything again, which I show every day.”

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