Tragedy as goalkeeper dies after saving penalty in Belgium

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A goalkeeper has tragically died from a heart attack seconds after saving a penalty.

Arne Espeel, 25, was in action for Winkel Sport B against Westrozebeke in Belgium on Saturday when the shocking incident occurred.

The stopper’s side were leading 2-1 when the opposition were awarded a spot-kick early in the second half, reports.

It was gathered that he however managed to keep his team’s advantage as he correctly dived the right way to save the penalty.

But straight after celebrating, the footballer collapsed onto the turf in front of shocked players and the crowd.

Medics raced to the field to try to save the star as emergency services rushed to the scene.

However, Espeel was pronounced dead in the hospital.

The match, which was in the seventh tier, was abandoned.

The heartbreaking scenes unfolded in front of Espeel’s watching parents and his brother Aaron, who was on the subs’ bench for Winkel Sport.


A club statement after the tragic incident read, “Arne has played for us since he was a kid, and everybody really liked him.

“It’s impossible to understand how something like this could happen to someone so young.

“He had been a completely healthy young lad before,” Winkel sporting director Patrick Rotsaert said, adding, “This is a disaster and a shock for us all.”

He said Arne was a lovely guy, and always ready to help others, describing the goalkeeper’s death as a bitter blow for the family and the entire club.

Winkel’s sister club, Eendracht Hooglede, said, “We were horrified to learn of Arne Espeel’s death.

“We will hold a minute’s silence in memory of his tragic loss.”