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Soccer player fractures skull in Arsenal-Wolves Premier League match

Soccer player fractures skull in Arsenal-Wolves Premier League match
David Luiz of Arsenal (C) smacks heads with Wolves striker Raul Jimenez (L) in the fifth minute of a Premier League game on Sunday in London. Photo by Catherine Ivill/EPA-EFE

Nov. 30 (UPI) -- Striker Raul Jimenez sustained a fractured skull after he had a collision with defender David Luiz during a soccer matchup between the Wolverhampton Wanderers and Arsenal in England's Premier League.

Wolves said Jimenez is now "comfortable" after he had surgery Sunday night, hours after the 2-1 win over the Gunners at Emirates Stadium in London.

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"He has since seen his partner Daniela and is now resting," Wolves said in a news release. "He will remain under observation for a few days while he begins his recovery.

"The club would like to thank the medical staff at Arsenal, the paramedics, hospital staff and surgeons who, through their skill and early response, were of such help."

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Jimenez, 29, and Luiz, 33, each jumped up in the fifth minute and attempted to win a ball in the air from a corner kick before they smacked heads.

They both fell to the ground after the collision. Luiz had a bandage applied to his wound and played until halftime. Jimenez received 10 minutes of on-field treatment before he was wheeled off on a stretcher and taken to a local hospital.

"I was at the front, just behind him, so I jumped, and you heard it," Wolves fullback Conor Coady told reporters. "As they dropped, he was on his side, and it was important we kept him on his side and got the doctors on.

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"When you see them drop and they're not really responding, it becomes horrible to see. Player health comes into question and comes before any sort of performance."

Pedro Neto went on to give Wolves a 1-0 lead with a score in the 27th minute. Gabriel netted an equalizer three minutes later for the Gunners. Daniel Podence gave Wolves the final advantage with another score in the 42nd minute.

The Gunners face Rapid Wien in the group stage of the Europa League at 3 p.m. EST Thursday in London. Wolves battle Liverpool in another Premier League match at 2:15 p.m. EST Sunday at Anfield in Liverpool.

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