Farewell Diego Maradona

July 4, 2010 at 10:43 pm | Posted in Whitecaps Season 2010 | Leave a comment

Diego Maradona and the World Cup go together like tea and biscuits for me.

It has always been a bit of a soap opera, really.  In 1978 he was not picked, and controversy ensued.  In his absence, Cesar Menotti took Argentina to its first World Cup. In 1982 he was sent off after kicking a Brazilian player in the bollocks.  In 1986 he singlehandedly won the tournament.  In 1990 he carried an inferior Argentina to the final, only to lose.  Diego blamed the Mafia for the loss (Argentina was denied a clear penalty claim in that final).   In 1994 he left in disgrace for drug use after lighting up the pitch with his wonderful play.  I thought that was the last we would see of him at the World Cup until he reinvented himself as coach of Argentina.  He graced the World Cup with his sideline antics and sheer boyish enthusiasm. What was missing was the tactical nous to deal with the German juggernaut.

Whatever the case, it has been a pleasure to see the great man involved in the World Cup again and looking relatively healthy. In retrospect, it was sheer madness to appoint him coach of Argentina, but it was madness for which I am grateful. Will we see him at another World Cup?  I would guess not.

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