Angry Maradona offers reward over 'death' report

2018-06-28 17:37
Diego Maradona (Getty Images)

Buenos Aires - Diego Maradona has offered a $10,000 (R140 000) reward to identify the source of reports he had died after Argentina's Soccer World Cup match against Nigeria, his lawyer said Thursday.

The reports, circulated via WhatsApp voice messages from a man with an Argentine accent, said the 57-year-old star had been hospitalized and had died of cardiac arrest.

"I gave instructions to make public the decision to offer a reward of 300,000 pesos (R140 000) to anyone who can provide true and accurate information about the author of the audios," lawyer Matias Morla told Argentina's Clarin daily from Russia.

The Argentine star took ill at the end of the match and had to be helped from his seat.

But he denied rumors of ill health the day after, telling reporters: "I'm perfect. I've never been better."

Morla said Maradona had suffered "a spike" in blood pressure.

"It's a subject that at one time alarmed him. It's no secret how he lives through a game. How he lived them as a player is how he lives them as a fan."

According to Morla, Maradona shouldn't even have been at the stadium for the second half of the game, in which a late goal secured Argentina's World Cup.

"The doctors told him to rest, not to stay for the second-half of the Argentina-Nigeria match, but asking that of Maradona is like asking a son not to love his mother."

"For Diego, the team is Dona Tota (his mother), and he will never let her on her own," he said.

The audio messages spread on social media after the match.

"Maradona's sisters heard the news, they could not communicate with me nor with their brother, and one of them suffered a weakness, and the truth is that we cannot let such an outrage go by," Morla told Clarin.

More In This Category

Thomas Mueller says the Germans' shock early exit from the World Cup will provide "huge motivation" when he starts the new season.
Russian police have unexpectedly released Pussy Riot punk group members while they still face charges for invading the pitch at the World Cup football final.
Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinkovic-Savic has pledged his continued loyalty to the Serie A outfit amid reported interest from Europe's elite clubs.
New Real Madrid boss Julen Lopetegui says Gareth Bale is happy at the club and will reject any transfer move to Manchester United.