And it's not just a few players. Reportedly 41 Italian footballers have been affected since 1973, but no cases are known among players for Spain or France.
The latest to be stricken is Stefano Borgonovo, a 44-year-old former striker for AC Milan. His announcement that he was suffering from motor neurone disease (MND) was made from a wheelchair with a computer-generated voice and has chilled a nation of football fans who are used to considering players as idols rather than martyrs.There are many theories for why such a cluster should occur, including the use of pesticides on the pitch, or a side effect of performance-enhancing drugs, but no answers have been found to date. More discussion at this link.