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Former England Captain Terry Butcher: “I would pay 7 million to buy Maradona’s Golden Ball just to destroy it!”

New Delhi (India), May 20: Diego Armando Maradona, for many – the greatest footballer of all time – was remembered at the stadium where he scored his first-ever international goal for Argentina back in 1979 – Hampden Park, Glasgow. His achievements were recalled by two contrasting figures in his footballing journey. Argentinian World Cup-winning legend Ossie Ardiles, an international teammate and friend of Diego’s and perhaps Diego’s most famous opponent, legendary England Captain Terry Butcher.

Butcher and Maradona featured together in the most memorable World Cup match in history, England v Argentina at Mexico ‘86. Maradona scoring his ‘hand of god’ goal and the ‘Goal of the Century’ when he dribbled past the England team including a last-ditch tackle by England captain Butcher. Maradona was presented with the Adidas Golden Ball trophy to recognize him as best player of the 1986 World Cup.

The Golden Ball Trophy is to be auctioned in Paris at the world-famous Aguttes Auction House on the 6th of June. The unique item encapsulates all of the memories of that dramatic match and Diego’s finest moment – winning the World Cup for Argentina.

Speaking on the auction of the trophy Terry Butcher commented:

“I would pay 7 million to buy Maradona’s Golden Ball just to destroy it. But joking apart, I would like to say that Maradona is THE best player I’ve ever played against and certainly a contender for the greatest player ever; he really didn’t need to cheat.”

“Steve Hodge my England midfield colleague swapped shirts with Maradona after the infamous World Cup Quarter-Final. It sold for over 7 million pounds at auction, that gives an idea of what the Golden Ballwillraise.”

“As you know, I’m strongly opposed to how VAR has been implemented in football, but it would have changed the headlines from ‘Hand of God’ to ‘Caught Red Handed’!”

Ossie Ardiles commented: “Seeing Diego’s Golden Ball Award again, brings back so many memories of my dear friend Diego. 

“This Golden Ball is the symbol of something spectacular and unique. It marks the pinnacle of the World’s greatest player, the greatest World Cup goal. And the greatest individual performance of any World Cup.”

“It is very emotional for me to be here at Hampden Park at the scene of Diego’s first-ever goal for Argentina as an 18-year-old boy. We could see then he was going to be something special.”

“Diego of course, in time, would become for me the greatest player of all time.”

“In 1986 with the goal against England starting at the halfway line defined him. The pace, the power, the belief and the incredible, unmatched in history, control of the ball.”

“Not only did he have the ‘hand of god’ but he is the god of football. “

“For me he is the greatest ever player in the world’s favourite sport.”

Speaking about the comparison of Maradona to modern players including Messi and Ronaldo, Ossie Ardiles said:

“I love Cristiano, he is one of my favourite players of all time. His dedication to his art and his longevity in the sport and his achievements are incredible.”

“But I have to choose Lionel (Messi) as the greatest modern-day player. He has won it all. Champions Leagues, Copa América and the World Cup.”

“For me, it has to be Diego as the greatest footballer of all time. He had it all and he did it all.”

“He had a troubled life Diego, but what we should always remember, this is a boy who beat poverty to become the world’s greatest footballer.”

“No one in the world is a perfect person but Diego Armando Maradona was the perfect footballer.”

“I am proud of you my friend for everything you achieved, for the joy and happiness you brought so many around the world. Your legend willlive forever.”

Further Background Information

The Aguttes auction house will offer at auction a piece of world football history on June 6th, 2024: Diego Maradona’s Adidas Golden Ball trophy (1960 – 2020) awarded to the best player of the Mexico ‘86 World Cup. This is the most important individual distinction awarded to Maradona for a tournament in which he captained Argentina to World Cup victory, scored the ‘Goal of the Century’ and the infamous ‘Hand of God’ goal against England in the politically charged quarter-final encounter.

Jorge Burruchaga, Argentinian teammate of Diego Maradona and scorer of the winning goal at the 1986 World Cup says, “At that 1986 World Cup, Diego shone like never before or since in his career; it was his monument. We knew we had the best player in the world, there was no doubt about it, we knew it for a fact.”

“My favourite recollection of this World Cup is the second goal he scored against England, which remains the most beautiful in history for me because you must consider the state of the pitch, the altitude, the context between the two countries, and what he managed to do… He breezed past six players… It was divine. On that day, he created a lasting legacy for all Argentinian sportsmen and women, not just footballers, showing just how much, you have to fight to be worthy of wearing the Argentine jersey.”

Diego Armando Maradona was named “Player of the 20th Century” by FIFA, along with Pelé, and this trophy symbolizes his greatest achievement and his greatest ever goal.

Since the 1982 FIFA World Cup, the Adidas Golden Ball has rewarded the best player of the tournament, and thus constitutes one of the most prestigious individual distinctions in the world of football.

Maradona received the Adidas Golden Ball trophy at Lido (Paris, France) on November 13, 1986, as the best player of the World Cup. A unique piece in the history of football, this award given to the most emblematic player of this sport, alongside Pelé, constitutes a first in the art market: no Adidas Golden Ball trophy has been presented at auction, until today. The FIFA Museum (Zurich, Switzerland) preserves the Adidas Golden Ball from 1990.

While the Adidas Golden Ball changes design at each World Cup, the 1986 trophy uses the designs of the official Adidas “Azteca” ball used for this World Cup in Mexico.

At a recent auction, the shirt worn by Diego Maradona during the 1986 World Cup match against England, was sold for a reported figure in region of $7 million. It was sold by former England player Steve Hodge who exchanged shirts with Maradona after the classic world Cup match with Maradona scoring the ‘Hand of God’ goal and the ‘Goal of the Century.’ The Adidas Golden Ball trophy encompasses and marks all of that history.

François Thierry, sports expert for Aguttes Auction House says “Used far too often wrongly, the word “legend” fits Diego Maradona perfectly. He is to football what Muhammad Ali is to boxing or Michael Jordan to basketball, an icon who goes far beyond the boundaries of his sport. He is certainly one of the most human athletes we have ever known, with his strengths and weaknesses. The golden kid “El Pibe de Oro” (The Golden Boy) also nicknamed “the God of football”, is a special case in the history of world football, a raw and instinctive talent, in a career punctuated by strokes of brilliance with both success and excess. The history of football with a capital H is closely linked to that of Maradona.”www.aguttes.com

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