The former World Cup winner is considered one of the greatest footballers of all-time.
Argentina legend Diego Maradona has passed away at the age of 60, following a cardiac arrest at his home on Wednesday. Matias Morla, Maradona’s long-time agent, confirmed the news a few minutes ago to the Spanish international news agency EFE.
It had just been two weeks since the former FIFA World Cup winner was released from hospital following a surgery to remove a clot in his brain. He underwent the surgery on November 4 and was released exactly a week later. Earlier on Wednesday, he reportedly suffered a cardiac-respiratory arrest and was in a serious condition, before breathing his last.
He was in-charge of Argentine club Gimnasia de La Plata at the time of his untimely and tragic death. Prior to this, he had been admitted to hospital on several occasions since his retirement – and almost died of cocaine-induced heart failure in 2000, before undergoing years of rehabilitation. He also had a gastric bypass operation to lose weight in 2005 and was once more hospitalized two years later for alcohol-induced hepatitis.
Claudio Tapia, President of the Argentina Football Association (AFA) mourned the loss of one of the country’s greatest footballing heroes of all-time. “The AFA expresses its deepest pain at the death of our legend, Diego Armando Maradona. You’ll always be in our hearts,” their official statement read.
As mentioned earlier, he is most famous for inspiring his national team to glory at the 1986 World Cup finals in Mexico – and it was during the same tournament that he scored both the ‘Hand of God goal’ and the ‘Goal of the Century,’ in the quarterfinals against England. The two goals that are poles apart in terms of character have gone on to withstand the test of time – and to this date, they tell us more about the nature of the player than anything else that he was known for.
The legendary forward also led Napoli to two Serie A titles in 1987 and 1990. The other clubs he played for include Argentinos Juniors, Boca Juniors, Barcelona, Sevilla and Newell’s Old Boys. Over the course of a 21-year career, the attacking midfielder played over 420 matches for club and country across various levels and scored close to 200 goals. More than the number of goals, it was his style of play that made him standout from others who played at the same time. Because of this very reason, he is still regarded by many as the greatest footballer of all-time.
His individual honours include the FIFA Player of the Century (2000), FIFA Goal of the Century (for his goal in the ’86 World Cup), FIFA Hall of Fame entry and much more. Since 1994, he was also actively involved in the game as a manager, having coached the likes of Racing Club, Gimnasia de La Plata (Argentina), Fujairah, Al-Wasl (UAE), Dorados (Mexico) and the Argentina national team (between 2008 and 2010).