NEWCASTLE UNITED legend Philippe Albert has told how he cheated death in a horrific 50mph car smash.
Albert, 49, is lucky to be alive after a Citroen Berlingo people carrier ploughed into his Suzuki Vitara on a roundabout last week.
Albert said: “It was a violent collision. Just imagine what it’s like when you are calmly taking a roundabout and a car smashes into you at 50mph.
“Both vehicles were complete write-offs. Thankfully the cars were the only things that were damaged.”
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The accident happened in Gilly, a suburb of Charleroi, on Thursday afternoon when the Citroen’s brakes reportedly failed.
A man and his baby daughter in the other vehicle were taken to hospital after an elderly lady dashed across traffic to tend to the victims.
“I want to play down my own role in the matter, and highlight the actions of an old lady who arrived on the scene out of the blue.
“She crossed over from the other carriageway to help, while 30 or 40 cars had driven past the scene without bothering to stop.
“She asked if I was OK. I said I wasn’t injured at all, but told her that the other driver appeared groggy and above all that there was a little girl in the back of his car.
“She looked after the child while I phoned for the police and an ambulance. She is the person who deserves recognition.
“In the end no-one was injured. People have been calling me a hero, but that is overstating things. A hero is somebody who saves the lives of hundreds of people.
“I just used my mobile to call for the emergency services, which any sensible person would have done.
“I realise that I am a well-known person, and can understand why people talk about me in connection with this accident.
“But there are nameless people who played far bigger roles.
“Just the fact I made people happy for years by playing football does not make me into a hero.”
The ex-Belgium defender ended a successful five-year spell with the Toon in 1999.
Now a Belgian TV pundit, Albert played a major role in Kevin Keegan’s exciting Newcastle side that led the Premier League for most of the 1996-97 season before Manchester United pipped them to the title.