Former footballer Marcus Stewart gives update on Motor Neurone condition 3 months after diagnosis

  • Watch a clip from Marcus Stewart's interview here.

Former Bristol Rovers, Bristol City and Exeter City footballer Marcus Stewart has provided an update on his condition after he was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease earlier this year.

The 50-year-old, who also enjoyed spells as a player with Yeovil Town and Sunderland in the top flight, announced that he had MND on September 8 after undergoing a number of tests.

At the time he released a statement thanking those closest to him for their support during what had been a 'challenging time'.

“As I take the time to adjust, my intention is to continue to enjoy my work in football and spend time with my family.

“In the future, I would like to use my platform within football to help raise awareness around MND, but in the short-term, I would like to ask for privacy on behalf of myself and my family.”

Stewart provided an update on his health for the first time after it was announced that Exeter City's Boxing Day match against Portsmouth would be dedicated to raising awareness of the condition.

Speaking to Exeter City Football Club he said: "The first week or so was very difficult as you can imagine.

"How to go about telling people and thinking about that was quite hard but in general since those times I have been okay."

In the interview he also explains how he was diagnosed and when he first realised that something was wrong.

"It was during lockdown," he said.

"I remember doing some exercise and trying to keep busy and when I was doing pull-ups I noticed my hand kept slipping off the bar and it didn't seem right.

"Then when I thought about it more I noticed my left arm was smaller than my right which shouldn't have been the case as I was left-handed.

Marcus Stewart scoring for Bristol Rovers at Wembley.

"That is how I realised that something wasn't right and the testing and then diagnosis went from there."

Marcus also explained how since his diagnosis and seeing his neurologist that progression with the condition has been slow.

"Since my last meeting in June nothing has progressed and she was really happy so let's hope that continues.

"As it is for me I am adapting to doing things with my other hand. I am struggling with some things. I can't really write with my left hand anymore and I struggle to pull up a zip.

"My wife has been writing out all the Christmas cards this year which has actually saved me a job there which is great."

During the extended interview which can be found on the club's Youtube page the striker thanked his former clubs and fans for the support he has received since his diagnosis.

He also discussed how important it is to raise awareness of the condition and called for more funding to help find a cure in the future.

"We are so close to a breakthrough and hopefully in the next five years that will be the case," he said.

"Without awareness and without funding though that is just not going to happen.

"That is the main thing here. Let's find a cure and let's find a breakthrough."