The sports world was rocked this morning when news broke about the sudden death of Argentinian football legend Diego Maradona. According to his long-time attorney, Maradona passed away from a heart attack and had been recovering from recent brain surgery.
The superstar leaves behind a rich legacy of gameplay — among his notable career moments, Maradona played in four World Cups, winning the title for Argentina in 1986. That victory cemented Maradona as a household name, especially after his iconic (and controversial) “Hand of God” goal.
Maradona began his career at age 16 with the Argentinos Juniors and went on to play for Barcelona, Napoli, Sevilla and Boca Juniors. In later years, he coached Argentina’s national team.
Following news of his death, tributes from the sports world and from Maradona’s teammates and colleagues began pouring in, including eulogies from Napoli and FC Barcelona, two of Maradona’s major clubs.
“The world awaits our words but there are no words to describe the pain we’re going through,” Napoli tweeted. “Now is the time to grieve.”
The world awaits our words but there are no words to describe the pain we're going through. Now is the time to grieve.
Diego 💙 pic.twitter.com/40TTOIDNQ4
— Official SSC Napoli (@en_sscnapoli) November 25, 2020
“Thank you for everything, Diego,” FC Barcelona tweeted.
Thank you for everything, Diego pic.twitter.com/bJ9l3ixY7A
— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) November 25, 2020
England’s Gary Lineker, who also scored in that fateful 1986 World Cup, sent his condolences despite his well-documented rivalry with Maradona. Lineker called the late star “the best player of my generation and arguably the greatest of all time.”
Reports from Argentina that Diego Armando Maradona has died. By some distance the best player of my generation and arguably the greatest of all time. After a blessed but troubled life, hopefully he’ll finally find some comfort in the hands of God. #RipDiego
— Gary Lineker (@GaryLineker) November 25, 2020
Despite not having a Twitter account, Argentinian superstar Lionel Messi gave a statement about his friend and former coach, saying, “Even if I played for a million years, I’d never come close to Diego Maradona. Not that I would want to anyway. He’s the greatest there’s ever been.”
”Even if I played for a million years, I’d never come close to Diego Maradona. Not that I would want to anyway. He’s the greatest there’s ever been.”
- Lionel Messi pic.twitter.com/hKAc7RIQMY
— 433 (@433) November 25, 2020
See more reactions and tributes below:
RIP Football legend Diego Maradona 🙏
Photograph by Neal Preston © Queen Productions Ltd pic.twitter.com/A3o8A6pO2s
— Queen (@QueenWillRock) November 25, 2020
UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin: "I am deeply saddened to hear of the death of Diego Maradona, one of world football’s greatest and most iconic figures. He achieved greatness as a wonderful player with a genius and charisma of his own." pic.twitter.com/BYGWL2sNFZ
— UEFA (@UEFA) November 25, 2020
“What a player he was — undoubtedly the best of his era and up there with the greatest ever."
Bryan Robson on Diego Maradona ❤
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) November 25, 2020
RIP Diego Maradona, 60.
A wild, passionate, complex footballing genius so brilliantly talented he reduced even the best opposing teams to mass quivering wrecks.
Winning the World Cup for Argentina made him a Great.
But what he did at Napoli made him a God. Such sad news. pic.twitter.com/H4R6oVfpmv
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) November 25, 2020
Rest in peace, Diego Maradona. A legend of the game. 💙🤍 pic.twitter.com/lm6NBUlvTA
— The Players' Tribune (@PlayersTribune) November 25, 2020
"I've always said what an immense talent he was. It is a sad day for everyone involved in football."
Brendan Rodgers pays tribute to Diego Maradona following his passing. pic.twitter.com/H6dXGDhZJa
— Leicester City (@LCFC) November 25, 2020
One of the greatest ever. Taken too soon. pic.twitter.com/6u9LQG1fMR
— FootballJOE (@FootballJOE) November 25, 2020
— Emma Sanders (@em_sandy) November 25, 2020
Such sad news. A true legend of the sport. RIP Diego Maradona. pic.twitter.com/G0Mz4raHTj
— Dele (@dele_official) November 25, 2020
Almost a Blade at 17. RIP Diego. ❤️
Sheffield United are joining the football world in saying farewell to one of the greatest players to have ever played the beautiful game, Diego Maradona. pic.twitter.com/zOexhEKMhI
— Sheffield United (@SheffieldUnited) November 25, 2020
No one did a warm-up like Diego Maradona.
— FOX Soccer (@FOXSoccer) November 25, 2020
A sad day for the football world. One of the main faces in the history of the game. We will all miss you. 🙏🏽😢 Rest in peace, Diego Maradona. pic.twitter.com/yDgU9cIsVw
— Jérôme Boateng (@JeromeBoateng) November 25, 2020
Read original story Diego Maradona Remembered by Lionel Messi, Gary Lineker and More: ‘Greatest of All Time’ At TheWrap