The whole sporting world woke up to the rude news of the passing away of 60 year old Diego Maradona on Wednesday, November 25th, 2020. The sad news was confirmed by the president of the Argentine Football Association – Claudio Tapia. Maradona was confirmed to have died of “acute secondary lung edema to exacerbated chronic heart failure”.

Diego Maradona was a world renowned soccer legend who needs no elaborate introduction. The 5 ft 5 inches soccer genius possessed unparalleled vision, accurate passing ability, magical ball control and mesmerizing dribbling skills that endeared him to the hearts of the soccer lovers all over the world. During his playing career, Maradona played for Argentinos Juniors, Boca Juniors, Barcelona, Napoli, Sevilla and Newwell’s Old Boys. He won several league titles with these clubs and also set world record transfer fee twice when he signed for Barcelona in 1982-83 season for what was the world transfer fee of 5 million pounds, while he also attracted another 6.9 million pounds upon his transfer to Napoli in 1987-88 season. The number 10 playmaker known as Maradona scored a total of 312 goals from 491 appearances at the club level.

Regarding Maradona’s international career, he represented Argentina in four FIFA World Cups, among which is the 1986 World Cup in Mexico as the captain of Argentina national team, where he displayed an unusual soccer artistry against German national team and led his country to victory in the finals. He would emerge as the tournament’s best player with the Golden Ball.

But much more importantly, Maradona would be remembered glowingly for his magical display against England in the 1986 World Cup quarter finals when he scored two goals; one with the infamous “Hand of God”, while the second goal was the sizzling 60 metre dribble runs past five England players, which has been voted “Goal of the Century” in 2002 by voters. It is also important to mention it that he scored 42 goals for Argentina from 60 appearances.

As a coach, Maradona coached Argentina’s national team in 2008, Al Wasl – Dubai based club in 2011-12, Fujairah in 2017, Belarusian Club – Dynamo Brest as their Chairman in May 2018, Mexican club – Dorados between 2018 and 2019, and Gimnasia de La Plata between 2019 and 2020.

Argentina’s president – Alberto Fernandez eulogizes the genius player thus; “you took us to the top of the world. You made us feel incredibly happy. You were the greatest of all. Thank you for having existed”. Therefore at our sports desk, we sadly draw a curtain on an era by saying goodnight super soccer genius! arguably the most gifted player that ever existed.

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