Diego Maradona dead: Argentina legend dies aged 60

Football icon Diego Maradona has passed away aged 60 after suffering a cardiac arrest on Wednesday and was pronounced dead at the property near to where one of his two daughters with ex-wife Claudia Villafane lives. Maradona underwent surgery earlier this month to remove a blood clot from his brain.

He was released from the clinic in Buenos Aires two weeks ago.

Maradona is widely recognised as one of the greatest footballers of all time.

His professional career spanned 21 years with his crowning moment coming at the 1986 World Cup as he led Argentina to glory.

Maradona began his career at Argentinos Juniors before moving on to Boca Junior where he was quickly picked up by Barcelona.

Just two seasons were spent at the Nou Camp though before he made the move to his beloved Napoli.

It was in Italy where Maradona was starting tone recognised as one of the greatest of all time.

Maradona also become synonymous with England supporters at the 1986 World Cup for his ‘Hand of God’ goal, which eliminated the Three Lions from the tournament.

His second goal in the game though is widely regarded as one of the greatest ever scored at a World Cup which saw him dribble past five England players finally Peter Shilton to tap into an empty net.

However, while Maradona illustrious football career was starting to take shape in Italy, so was a cocaine addiction.

He was slapped with a 15-month suspension for violating drug regulations in 1991 and was thrown out of the 1994 World Cup after testing positive for ephedrine.

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The final years of his career were masked in controversy, but his talents on the football pitch inspired a generation.

Lionel Messi, now regarded as the greatest footballer, admitted five years ago that Maradona helped shape his path into football.

“I never followed anyone in particular, although when I started to think for myself Diego [Maradona] had recently returned home,” he said in 2015.

“That was in 1993. He joined Newell’s Old Boys when he came back from Spain and was part of the national team that qualified for USA ’94.

“If anybody inspired me starting out, it was undoubtedly him.”

Maradona eventually retired from football in 1997 at the age of 37 and soon moved into management.

He took charge of Argentina’s national side in 2008 and left after the 2010 World Cup, when they were beaten by Germany in the quarter-finals.

Spells as manager in the United Arab Emirates followed before returning to South America and then back home to Argentina where he was the current coach of Primera Division club Gimnasia de La Plata before his death.

(express.co.uk)

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