PANAJI: The footballer known and celebrated as an artiste despite the infamous ‘Hand of God’, has been permanently consigned to history as Argentine legend Diego Maradona (60) passed away following a heart attack on Wednesday.
Earlier this month, the Argentinian, whose post-retirement life was marred by drug abuse and weight-issues, had a brain surgery.
Regarded as one of the greatest footballers of all time, the dazzling attacking midfielder played an iconic role in immortalising the No 10 jersey. In his 91 Argentina caps, the diminutive lightning-quick dribbler and strong sprinter Maradona scored 34 goals. He played in four FIFA World Cups. His greatest moment of glory came in the 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico as he captained Argentina to triumph prevailing over West Germany in the final.
Maradona’s infamous yet artistic ‘Hand of God’ goal helped his country overcome England 2-1 in the quarter-finals. His second goal in the same game, was an all-time great as he dribbled the ball past five England players and voted as ‘Goal of the Century’ by FIFA.com voters in 2002.
Maradona was one of the greatest players to have played his club football in Europe as he donned the colours for Napoli in Italian Serie A. His managerial role with his country and UAE club Al Wasl among others, however, failed to reach a notable level.