Euro 2012: Chinese man dies after 11-night marathon... just after Italy beat Ireland
A FOOTBALL-obsessed man from Changsha in south-central China has reportedly died after staying up for 11 successive nights to watch Euro 2012 matches.
According to a report in Hunan province's Sanxiang Metropolis newspaper, the 26-year-old was found dead by his mother after his 11-day football-watching marathon, finally expiring after Ireland's 2-0 defeat to Italy on June 18.
The time-difference between Europe and China means that most of the Euro 2012 matches only start at 2.45am local time, finishing at daybreak.
Using a false name to protect the identity of the victim's family, the newspaper said Jiang Xiaoshan had been a member of his university's football team and had enjoyed good health before the tournament, co-hosted by Poland and Ukraine, which kicked off on June 8.
"We would rest occasionally but he watched everyday and would not miss a single match," one friend told the Sanxiang Metropolis.
Friends said Mr Jiang, who they described as an England and France supporter, had seemed in low spirits while watching Antonio Cassano and Mario Balotelli score to take Italy to the Euro 2012 quarter finals in Monday's victory over Ireland.
"Maybe he felt tired after staying up night after night," said one friend.
Mr Jiang reportedly returned home at 5am last Tuesday but when his mother attempted to wake him for dinner that evening she found him dead.
Liu Zhiling, a doctor from the local People's Hospital ER, told the newspaper: "Jiang was in good health. But staying up through the night and not sleeping enough weakened his immune system and he drank and smoked while watching the football, triggering his condition."
"If you use beer to replace water that is not good. Alcohol harms [the body]," Dr Liu added.