The Liverpool loanee recounted his experience after a head collision in Sunday’s league encounter against Augsburg at the Opel Arena
Mainz forward Taiwo Awoniyi disclosed that he wanted to continue playing despite a nasty head collision with Augsburg’s Felix Uduokhai.
The 22-year-old was stretchered off in the 23rd minute with his neck in a brace before he was rushed to the hospital for further observation. Subsequently, he was replaced by German-Nigerian Karim Onisiwo.
Achim Beierlorzer’s men suffered a 1-0 home defeat to the Fuggerstadter thanks to Florian Niederlechner’s first minute strike and they now sit three places above the relegation zone after accruing 31 points from 31 games.
Now in a stable condition, the Nigeria youth international stated that being in an unconscious state, he still craved to continue with the encounter, while applauding the medics for reviving him as well as the fans for their goodwill messages.
“What I find interesting about this incident is that the doctors and paramedics told me that while they were attending to me at the stadium after the collision I was saying I want to continue playing,” he told Ojbsport.
“I am so thankful and grateful to God for being alive. It happened so fast and I didn’t even know what was going on, but in my mind all I was saying was I wanted to continue playing.
“I regained consciousness in the hospital and was told of what happened in the stadium. To be alive and okay is the greatest gift that anybody can wish for and I am so appreciative.
“I appreciate them for the work they did and I also thank the fans for the well wishes.”
The Liverpool loanee scored his first Mainz goal on May 17 in a 2-2 versus Cologne in a German top-flight clash after replacing Dong-Won Ji.
He is unlikely to feature when Mainz visit the Signal Iduna Park for Wednesday’s tie with Borussia Dortmund.
Awoniyi joined the Reds in 2015 but has since spent his time out on loan, with the club unable to secure a UK work permit for the player.
Spells at FSV Frankfurt, NEC Nijmegen and Gent failed to work out, but the Nigeria U23 star was impressive in two stints with Belgian outfit Mouscron.