Marco Gabbiadini: Former AFC Sunderland star undergoes major heart surgery

Marco Gabbiadini in his Sunderland daysMarco Gabbiadini in his Sunderland days
Marco Gabbiadini in his Sunderland days | Getty Images
A former Premier League footballer is due to undergo major heart surgery.

Former Premier League and Sunderland player Marco Gabbiadini has revealed that he is due to undergo triple heart bypass surgery after discovering major heart problems.

Gabbiadini said he noticed something was wrong after experiencing heartburn during a gym session. Additionally, he had also noticed himself falling behind the rest of the crowd during hikes due to tiredness. After taking an angiogram, it was found that Gabbiadini was ‘working on about 20%’ of the full capacity of his heart.

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After he made the news of his condition public, Gabbiadini strongly encouraged anyone else with similar symptoms to him to get them checked out as soon as possible.

Over the course of his professional playing career, Gabbiadini turned out for clubs such as York City, Crystal Palace and Derby County, but he is perhaps best known for his time with Sunderland. He won his sole professional trophy with the Black Cats, when they picked up the Third Division title in 1988.

A prolific goal scorer, Gabbiadini scored 74 goals over the course of 157 league appearances for Sunderland - he also represented England’s U21s team during his youth career. He started in 1985 with York City, and retired in 2004 after a spell with Hartlepool United. He’s now 56.

Speaking in an interview regarding his condition, Gabbiadini said [via BBC News]: “I found out I’ve been working on about 20% of the capacity of my heart. I started going back and was trying to do some cardio and just as I was getting to the higher end of my heart rate I started to feel some heartburn.

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"Also, we had a couple of country walks and I was lagging behind a bit on the hills which normally is not an issue. I’m usually pretty private but I just felt we’re privileged to have this platform and I just wanted to highlight it and get people to do something about it if they have an issue.”