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The former Real Madrid star suffered "severe" cardiac arrest. He remains in intensive care but is in stable condition.

Real Madrid icon Alfredo Di Stefano is in "serious but stable condition" after suffering a heart attack, according to doctors at Gregorio Maranon hospital in Madrid.

The 88-year-old was admitted to the hospital Saturday after becoming unwell while eating in a restaurant near Real's Santiago Bernabeu and has been placed into intensive care.

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Di Stefano has a history of heart trouble and underwent surgery for a quadruple heart bypass in 2006. According to the emergency services, the latest cardiac arrest lasted 18 minutes.

Doctors Emilio del Valle Hernandez and Francisco Fernandez Aviles said in a report Sunday that his condition is still serious.

"The patient Alfredo Di Stefano remains in the Coronary Unit of the Cardiology Department," the report said. "Although it appears to be a severe cardiopathy, the patient remains in a serious but stable condition."

Real president Florentino Perez reportedly visited the 88-year-old.

Argentina-born forward Di Stefano represented both his native country and Spain at international level and is widely regarded as one of the finest footballers of all time.

During an 11-year spell with Real spanning from 1953 to 1964, he won eight La Liga titles, five European Cups and was named European Footballer of the Year in 1957 and 1959.

He scored 308 times in 396 competitive appearances for the European champions.

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