The Argentine football legend Diego Maradona has died at the age of 60. A spokesman confirmed this. Accordingly, he died of a heart attack. At the beginning of November, Maradona had to undergo brain surgery.
Former Argentine soccer star Diego Maradona is dead. His spokesman said he died of a heart attack. Maradona was 60 years old. He had been suffering from health problems for a long time. A few weeks ago he had had brain surgery.
Maradona is considered to be one of the best football players of all time. In his home country Argentina he is celebrated as a national hero. The 1986 World Cup in Mexico made him a legend – especially the irregular goal in the quarter-final against England. Then he said in front of the cameras, "It was a little bit Maradona’s head and a little bit the hand of God." In the end, Argentina became world champions – in the final against Germany.
A life between extremes
He started his football career with the Argentinos Juniors. In 1982 he moved from Boca Juniors to Europe for FC Barcelona for a record transfer fee. Then it went on to SSC Napoli, again for a record sum. With the team he won the 1989 UEFA Cup.
But Maradona is not only known for his football skills. There are countless anecdotes about him: how he fooled his opponents in rows, how he shot journalists with an air rifle or even a church was named after him. His name stands for a life between extremes.
In 1991 he was arrested for the first time for using cocaine. After a drug withdrawal, he made his comeback as a television presenter. Guest on his first show: his Brazilian soccer colleague Pele. He reacted with dismay to Maradona’s death. Pele said he was sad to lose friends along the way. "But I’m sure we’ll kick some balls together in heaven one day."
No building on old successes
Maradona later returned to the football business and became the Argentine national coach. But even with superstar Lionel Messi in the team, he was unable to build on his successes as a player. Argentina was eliminated from Germany at the 2010 World Cup.
Two years ago he caused a sensation in his home country when he expressed ambitions for the office of Vice President. At that time, Maradona said he was thinking of going into the 2019 election campaign as a vice-presidential candidate – alongside Cristina Kirchner, who at the time had problems with the judiciary because of alleged corruption. However, that did not happen.