Screening calls after tragedy
Italy's sports minister Piero Gnudi has called for the introduction of more frequent medical tests following the sudden death of Piermario Morosini.
Last Updated: 15/04/12 12:14pm
Italy's sports minister Piero Gnudi has called for the introduction of more frequent medical tests following the sudden death of Livorno midfielder Piermario Morosini.
The 25-year-old, on loan from Udinese, collapsed during Saturday's Serie B match at Pescara and was taken to a nearby hospital, where he was declared dead.
A post-mortem examination will be conducted on Monday to ascertain whether Morosini's cause of death was cerebral or cardiac.
Gnudi said: "It is always difficult to accept the death of a young man of only 25, especially during a context of enjoyment and sport.
"The recent repetition of dramatic incidents like this must also force us to work on doing everything possible to guarantee accurate and frequent medical tests so that we may limit in every way the chance of this happening again."
Bolton midfielder Fabrice Muamba has made remarkable progress since suffering a cardiac arrest during the FA Cup quarter-final at Tottenham four weeks ago, but Italian volleyball player Vigor Bovolenta died during a league game last month at the age of 37 following a heart attack.
Morosini's death has shocked the nation and the Italian Football Federation have postponed all matches this weekend.
The Italian Olympic Committee have invited other federations to request a one-minute silence to be observed in memory of Morosini prior to any games taking place on Sunday.
Damiano Tommasi, president of the Italian Players' Union, has planned a meeting in the near future to discuss testing of players for heart-related problems.
"It is a tragedy that leaves us helpless and disarmed," Tommasi said to assocalciatori.it. "An event like this is inexplicable.
"We wait to find out more from the autopsy, but now the prevailing sensation is of sadness.
"We had a meeting planned on Monday, which has been postponed, but we will now organise a get-together to discuss this tragedy and the problems tied to ensuring the safety of players.
"If in professional divisions there are certain guarantees, tens of thousands of players in the amateur Leagues have very few scans."
Italy already have a very advanced screening programme for heart problems in athletes but some believe that even with those precautions, tragedies cannot be avoided.
"The players are monitored every four or five months," Lazio coach Edy Reja said. "But tragedies can happen. It's life's destiny."