Glenn Hoddle has appeared as a pundit on BT Sport for the first time since the heart attack he suffered in their studios on his 61st birthday back in October.
The former England manager has returned to television screens to offer insight on Chelsea’s Europa League last-16 clash with Dynamo Kiev.
Hoddle, 61, collapsed on the set towards the end of a broadcast on October 27 and was immediately taken to hospital and subsequently underwent surgery. He was discharged from hospital late in November and has been continuing his recovery at home.
Glenn Hoddle made his first appearance as BT Sport pundit on Thursday since his heart attack
Hoddle was in high spirits ahead of Chelsea’s Europa League last-16 clash with Dynamo Kiev
Hoddle has affiliations with the Blues – having played and managed them between 1993-96
BT Sport presenter Jake Humphrey (left) introduced him alongside Owen Hargreaves
Hoddle has spent time recovering with his family but is fortunately now back to a level of health where he feels he is ready to return to work.
‘Without a shadow of a doubt I’m a very lucky man but it’s great to be back working with you guys,’ he said as he was introduced in the pre-match coverage on BT Sport by presenter Jake Humphrey and fellow pundit Owen Hargreaves.
‘I’ve been watching a lot of football and you on the tele, but it’s lovely to be here.
‘It’s time to get back [to work] and I’m looking forward to it.’
Prior to that, the England legend took to Twitter to announce his return on Thursday, writing: ‘On route to @ChelseaFC for my first game back and can’t wait. Looking forward to seeing @mrjakehumphrey and the rest of the @btsportfootball team.’
Last week Hoddle admitted he recalls very little of events that day but feels grateful to have been around so many people when it happened as they saved his life.
Hoddle celebrated his 61st birthday on the Saturday Morning Savage show on October 27
Hoddle was taken seriously ill following filming at the BT Sports studios with Harry Redknapp
‘I’m doing alright, it’s been three and a bit months. It’s been tough,’ Hoddle said as he gave a first interview with Robbie Savage, host of Saturday Morning Savage.
‘What’s the chances of what happened? It was a normal day, I felt fine and travelled into the studio. I remember saying ‘I’ll see you at 5:30’ and the rest is a little bit of a blur.
‘I can’t remember any of that at all (being on the show). I remember you and (Paul) Ince walking towards me with a birthday cake. I remember that and the other thing I remember is the lizard. The reason the lizard came on I presume because Harry (Redknapp) was going in (I’m a Celebrity! Get Me Out Of Here).
‘I can’t remember the teqball match at all. You didn’t beat me did you?
‘I was leading 2-1!’ joked Savage. ‘I can’t believe that,’ Hoddle added, clearly not lacking a sense of humour having reunited with the BT Sport host.
Hoddle was enthusiastic moments before the collapse but is now recovering in hospital
He had demonstrated his ball skills during the show before he was taken seriously ill
‘I just thank god I was in the studio at that time with Simon (Daniels) there and a defibrillator there. I could have been on my own and I wouldn’t be sitting here today.
‘What a time to do it as well on your birthday. Some present to myself! It was probably more traumatic to you and the guys on the show because I was out of it.’
Steve Sidwell and Paul Ince were guests that day and recalled the horror in the studio when Hoddle collapsed and hit his head on the studio floor.
They were encouraged to keep talking to him, telling him to ‘keep fighting’ and Ince continued to refer to Hoddle as ‘gaffer’ having played under him for England.
A member of the BT Sport production crew, special constable Simon Daniels, used his first aid training to help Hoddle in the moments after he collapsed.
Daniels gave Hoddle immediate medical attention and his swift actions were praised by both Hoddle’s family and also Assistant Chief Constable of Thames Valley Police Nikki Ross, who said he had been ‘incredible’.