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86-year-old Real Madrid great Alfredo Di Stefano to marry 36-year-old

Argentinian Alfredo Di Stefano, who’s 86 years old and regarded as one of football’s greatest ever strikers, will wed 36-year-old Costa Rican Gina Gonzalez in a few weeks time.

The honorary president of Real Madrid said he was getting married to his personal secretary "because I want to and I have been a widower for eight years".

"Each madman to their own," he was quoted as saying in the El Mundo newspaper.

Alfredo Di Stefano
Alfredo Di Stefano is to marry a woman 50 years his junior. Pic/AFP

Talking to the newspaper, he said: ‘I’m in love. I’m getting married to Gina. I am 86 but I have a young heart.’

Di Stefano has had his share of health problems in recent years and these days is often seen in public in a wheelchair.
The 1957 and ’59 Ballon d’Or winner revealed that he met his bride-to-be when she helped in the preparation of his book and that his "sense of humour" had won her over.

Di Stefano, who suffered a heart attack eight years ago and now gets around in a wheelchair, claimed he was unconcerned how his children would take the news.

He added: ‘What do you think they would say? They might be against it. But that is not important to me.

‘I am interested in my life and nothing else. And not making a lot of trouble.

‘They are going to have a go at me but I will take it with sincerity. If any wants to ask me then let them do it and I will explain it to them.’

Known as "La Saeta Rubia" (the blond arrow), Di Stefano's achievements as a player helped turn Real, whom he joined in 1953, into one of the world's leading sides.

Di Stefano helped transform Real into one of Europe’s super powers, winning five successive European Cup finals with them from 1955 to 1960, scoring in each of the finals.

Born in Buenos Aires, Di Stefano became one of the greatest players of his time winning championship titles in Argentina (1947 with River Plate), Colombia (1949, 1951, 1953 with Millionarios de Bogota) and Spain (8 between 1954 and 1964 with Real Madrid).

Alfredo Di Stefano
A young Alfredo Di Stefano. Pic/AFP

Di Stefano also won the Copa America with the Argentinian national soccer team in 1947, five European Cups with Real Madrid (1956-1960) along with one Intercontinental Cup (1960) and received the European Golden Ball award for best player of the year in 1957 and 1959.

He later turned to coaching winning two championships titles in Argentina with Boca Juniors (1969-1970), one in Spain with Valence (1971), one European Supercup and one Cup Winners' Cup in 1980.

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