Monday, March 1, 2021

Diego Maradona dies: The greatest of all just left us – former Argentina team-mate Russo

SoccerNews in La Liga 26 Nov 2020


Boca Juniors head coach Miguel Angel Russo said “the greatest of all just left us” after the death of his former team-mate, Diego Maradona.

Maradona, regarded as arguably the greatest footballer ever, died aged 60 after a suspected heart attack on Wednesday.

Russo was a former Argentina team-mate of Maradona’s and the Boca coach was saddened by his death.

“I feel a big sorrow, a deep pain as he was the greatest player in Argentina and the world,” he told reporters.

“I had the chance to be his team-mate for the national team and we shared many things. He gave so many things to the Argentinian people and the sport of football.

“The greatest of all just left us.”

Russo shared his memories of Maradona, who led Argentina to the 1986 World Cup title, with the pair having also coached against one another earlier this year when Boca beat Gimnasia y Esgrima La Plata.

“The best of our memories together will stay with me. We have lots of stories together,” he said.

“I feel a deep pain and a big sorrow, but we all are aware of how much he gave to the Argentinian football, his joy was all about playing.”

Russo added: “There are lots of memories. When having lunch, I loved eating an orange but then he started playing with it [like a ball] and making it softer.

“So I always told him, ‘Diego, I’m starving, please give me that already’, as the orange never touched the ground.”

Boca, where Maradona had two spells as a player, had their Copa Libertadores clash against Internacional, scheduled for Wednesday, postponed.

Russo thanked CONMEBOL for postponing the last-16 first leg.

“The squad and I were having lunch but then our mood changed on hearing the news. We just knew at the moment what we had to do,” he said.

“I appreciate that CONMEBOL understood the situation for Boca. It just wasn’t the right moment to play a football game.”


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