National News

Maradona loves Fidel Castro

2010-07-24 21:37

Havana - Football megastar and Argentine living deity Diego Maradona has sent a message of love and admiration to former president Fidel Castro and promised to visit Cuba soon, state-run media said Saturday.

"Tell Fidel that I love him," Maradona told, the news website where Castro publishes opinion columns on current affairs.

According to Cubadebate in a story datelined Caracas, Maradona "will travel to Havana within 30 days, and of course he'd love to see Fidel."

Maradona, one of the greatest football players in history and the controversial captain of Argentina's national team, is currently in Venezuela on the invitation of leftist President Hugo Chavez.

Maradona said that in his latest television appearances Castro seemed "very lucid, very well, contrary to what the Americans want, which is to see him dead," Cubadebate said.

"He's very much alive and that suits me well," Maradona said, speaking during a meeting with Chavez at the Miraflores presidential palace.

Maradona, 49, has been out of the media spotlight since his return from South Africa, where he took his team to the 2010 World Cup quarter-finals.

The Argentine star first visited Cuba in 1987 and spent long periods on the island in the early to mid 2000s, away from the hounding of reporters, as he received medical treatment for cocaine addiction, alcoholism and obesity.

Maradona interviewed Castro for an Argentine TV show in 2005, and gave the aging Cuban leader autographed football shirts that he wore while playing for the national squad and for Argentine team Newell's Old Boys, Cubadebate said.

Castro in turn considers Maradona "a close friend, noble, and without doubt a great athlete" who is a friend of Cuba.

Castro, nearly 84, withdrew from power in 2006 to recover from a stomach ailment. Cuba's current president is his younger brother, Raul Castro, 79.

Read more on:    swc  |  diego maradona  |  havana  |  cuba


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Updated: Hottest SWC WAGs

Updated: Hottest SWC 2010 WAGs


World Cup 2010 is over and the country is returning to normal - but have you moved on yet?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.