Diego Armando Maradona

19 Jul


Diego Armando Maradona, better known as Maradona is one of the greatest players who played football. Maradona is currently the Argentinean national team coach. Maradona shared the award, FIFA player of the century, with the Brazilian great Pele after finishing first in the internet vote. Maradona thrilled millions of people across the world with his great creativity, dribbling skills, ball control as well as with great goals. Maradona in his glorious 25-year career played for top teams in Argentina and Europe. He featured in 4 world cups for Argentina and in 1979 youth world cup. Maradona is a controversial figure on and off the football field. He failed drug test during 1994 world cup. He had problems with cocaine addiction and at times, his on field antics were not good.

 Maradona was born on 3oth October 1969 at Lanus, Argentina. He lived in the town named Villa Fiorito situated in the Buenos Aires outskirts during his childhood. His younger brothers Eduardo and Hugo followed his footsteps to become professional footballers. Maradona was interested in football from a very young age and he supported Boca juniors for whom he later played. Maradona has two daughters Giannina and Dalma with his ex-wife Claudia Villafane. Diego Armando Junior is his illegitimate son.

His football exploits started with Cebolitas, the junior team of Argentinos Juniors in 1970 at the age of 10.He made his professional debut with Argetninos Juniors on 20th October 1976 at the age of 16.He scored 116 goals in 166 matches for Argentinos Juniors. He made his debut for his dream club Boca Juniors on 22 February 1981 against Talleres de Cordoba after leaving Argentinos juniors for 1 million pounds. He scored two goals and they won the match 4-2.He won his first league champions medal with Boca Juniors in 1982.

Maradona moved to Europe after world cup in 1982 by joining Spanish club Barcelona for a world record fee in that era, 5 million pounds. He won Copa del Rey as well as Spanish super cup in 1983 with Barcelona. After problems with Barcelona’s management, he requested for a transfer in 1984.In another world record deal worth 6.9 million pounds, he moved to Italian Serie A club.

Maradona’s prime time in career was during his tenure with Napoli. He became a cult hero of the Naples. He is part of their history as someone who took Napoli to glories in Italy, and Europe. He truly enlightened the population of Naples during 1984-1991 and through him world came to know about Napoli. He was as like Michael Jordan for Chicago Bulls. He won two scuddetto’s (1986/1987, 1989/1990), Italian cup (1987), EUEFA cup (1989) and supercopa italiano (1990) with Napoli. He scored 115 goals for Napoli in 259 matches. . He left Napoli in 1992, after leading them through the most successful period in their history, under dubious circumstances. His problem with cocaine affected his career as he started missing practises and games and it made club hierarchy to fine him on occasions. He failed a drug test meant for cocaine and he was banned for 15 months.

He returned to Spain with Sevilla and played for them during 1992/1993 .He moved to Newell’s Old Boys in 1993.While he returned to his favourite club Boca juniors in 1995 and retired from professional football after two years. Maradona could not reignite his magic after leaving Napoli.

Maradona first played for Argentina at the age of 16 on 27th February 1977 against Hungary. He won the World Youth championship 1979 for Argentina with scintillating performances. However, he did not get nod for the 1978 football world cup though he has established himself among top players in Argentina. He played his first world cup in 1982 and scored two goals in five matches. He was sent off against Brazil for foul. Maradona took the centre stage of 1986 world cup. He captained Argentina to world cup glory. He was the player of the tournament as he scored five goals and gave five assists with scintillating displays. He caught the attention of the world with his exploits for Argentina in Quarterfinal match against England. He scored a goal with head and hand, and it stood, as referee did not notice. It later became famous as Diego maradona’s hand of god goal. In the same match, he scored a master class goal. He received the ball from his own half, then dribbled past the five English players, and beat the keeper to score the goal, which later got the FIFA vote for greatest goal scored in world cup history. In 1990 world cup, also Maradona captained the Argentinean team. However, they lost the final to West Germany. However, in 1994 world cup he was sent back to Argentina for failing dope test. He played two matches and scored one goal. He scored 34 goals for Argentina in 91 matches.

He managed Mandiyu during 1994 season and Racing club during 1995 season without achieving success. However, he returned to the management with Argentinean national team in 2008 and currently he is managing them through the world cup qualifiers. His first club Argentinos Juniors renamed their stadium after Maradona’s name in 2003.He hosted a popular television show named La Noche del 10 during 2005 and hosted celebrities like Pele, Crespo, Fidel Castro ,Zidane, Tyson, Ronaldo and many more. “Yo soy el Diego” is Diego Armando Maradona’s biography.

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