Diego Maradona: Genius as a player but misfit as a coach

Sep 10, 2018, 09:22 IST | AFP

With a cultured left foot and mesmerising dribbles he was twice signed for a world record fee, first by Barcelona and then Napoli

Diego Maradona: Genius as a player but misfit as a coach
Argentine football star Diego Maradona is pictured upon his arrival at the international airport in Culiaca, Sinaloa state, Mexico on September 8, 2018. - Maradona is expected to be presented as new team coach of Mexican second-division club Dorados on Monday. Pic/AFP

As much as he was a genius with the ball at his feet, Diego Maradona's coaching career has been far from distinguished and took a curious turn when he joined Mexican second-division outfit Dorados.

The man who led Argentina to just their second World Cup crown -- according to many almost single-handedly -- and whose brilliance inspired Napoli to the only two Serie A titles in their history, has ploughed a less succesful coaching furrow. With a cultured left foot and mesmerising dribbles he was twice signed for a world record fee, first by Barcelona and then Napoli.

He played for some of Argentina's biggest and most prestigious clubs: Boca Juniors, Newell's Old Boys and Argentinos Juniors, while also representing his country 91 times and scoring 34 goals. "If I die, I want to be born again and play football to give the people joy," he once said. Father time has long caught up with the 57-year-old, though, as he wryly notes: "I have shorter legs than a picture frame, if I want to train I get torn all the way up to the shoulders."

After the glittering playing highs, his coaching career, barring a two-year stint in charge of the Argentine national team, has been largely spent far away from the glitz and glamour.

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