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Sports

Car crash victim Vukcevic's condition improves

The Bundesliga club Hoffenheim have announced that Boris Vukcevic is no longer in acute danger of death from severe head injuries suffered in a car crash September 28. The incident may have been linked to his diabetes.

Hoffenheim announced on the club website Friday that the promising Germany U21 midfielder Boris Vukcevic was no longer fighting for his life in a Heidelberg hospital. Citing doctors at the university clinic, the club said "Vukcevic has survived the most acute phase and his condition has stabilized."

Vukcevic remained in an artificial coma, however, and doctors were unable to offer a longer-term prognosis. Hoffenheim also continued to describe his condition as critical.

"We are happy about this news first and foremost on Boris' behalf and his family's," head coach Markus Babbel said. "We were all desperately hoping he'd make it. We understand that there's a long road ahead of him still, but this news gives us the strength to go about our daily business with a little less difficulty."

Earlier on Friday, police in Heidbelberg said that Vukcevic's blood sugar levels were low at the time of the accident. The Croatian-born player suffers from diabetes.

Vukcevic collided almost head-on with a heavy goods vehicle on September 28, with the accident taking place a medium-sized road in southwestern Germany that runs through the site of Hoffenheim's stadium, Sinsheim.

Though born in Croatia, Vukcevic is a German youth international footballer. The German Under 21 team, which drew 1-1 with Switzerland on Friday evening, took to the field wearing Vukcevic's number 7 jersey to show support for their stricken team mate.

msh/mkg (AFP, dpa, Reuters)