This is remarkable and horrifying in equal measure.
Fabio Quagliarella, the Italian striker with the most satisfying surname to pronounce, has had a nomadic life in Italy. He has spent his entire 18-year career in Serie A, but has a remarkable list of clubs: Torino, Fiorentina, Chieti, Ascoli, Sampdoria, Udinese, Napoli, and Juventus, prior to a return to where it all began: Torino. That's not where it ends, however: he is currently plying his trade at Sampdoria (again).
It might have been different, however. Quagliarella wanted to stay with Napoli, his boyhood club, but revealed this weekend that he was forced to leave Naples after being harassed by a stalker. His stalker - a former policeman - was jailed for four years on Friday last, and after scoring for Sampdoria in their 1-1 draw with Cagliari on Sunday, Quagliarella opened up after the game on his seven-year personal hell. The stalker accused Quagliarella of being part of the local mafia, of involvement in paedophilia and regularly made death threats to his home.
Speaking to Sky Italia, while choking back tears, Quagliarella recalled his horrific ordeal.
This week marked the end of an off the pitch issue that had turned into a nightmare for me
I have this huge weight taken off my shoulders and this is the real reason I had to leave Napoli and Naples. I was very happy there, but I was affected by this situation that turned into a genuine nightmare.
I wouldn’t wish it upon anyone. I couldn’t leave my house, neither could my family. I thank the courts for ensuring the truth came out.
It was even more painful because as the investigation was on-going, I couldn’t tell people about it, I couldn’t express what was happening to me.
If you speak Italian, the emotional interview is below: