Diego Maradona, an Argentina football legend, has died at the age of 60 following a heart attack. The news was confirmed by Matias Morla, Maradona‘s longtime agent, on Wednesday.
A statement from the Argentina Football Association read spoke about the loss:
“The Argentine Football Association, through its President Claudio Tapia, expresses its deepest pain at the death of our legend, Diego Armando Maradona. You‘ll always be in our hearts.”
Alberto Fernandez, the president of Argentina, also confirmed three days of national mourning following the tragic news. Fernandez posted a photograph of himself hugging Maradona to Twitter along with the message: “You took us to the highest place in the world. You made us immensely happy. You were the greatest of all. Thanks for existing, Diego. We are going to miss you the rest of our lives.”
News of Maradona’s passing follows the football star battling health issues, recently undergoing emergency surgery for a subdural haematoma several weeks ago. He ended up suffering a heart attack at his home in the outskirts of Buenos Aires on Wednesday, Argentinian media and acquaintances of the former player said.
Diego Maradona was the captain of Argentina’s team in 1986 when they won the World Cup 1986, along reaching the finals in 1990. At the height of his club career, at Napoli from 1984-91, he helped the side win its only two Italian league titles.
On Wednesday, Napoli said the death was a “devastating blow” for both the city and the club. ”We are in mourning,” club spokesman Nicola Lombardo said. ”We feel like a boxer who has been knocked out. We are in shock.”
“Everyone is waiting for words from us. But what words could be possible for pain as strong as that we are currently experiencing? Now is the time for tears. Later, it will be words,” the club posted on its Twitter account.
Since ending his playing career back in 1997, the star battled a series of health issues. He was admitted to hospital in January 2019 with internal bleeding in the stomach. He also fell ill at the 2018 World Cup in Russia, where he was filmed passing out in an executive box at the Argentina-Nigeria game.
In 2004, he was hospitalized with severe heart and respiratory problems related to a long battle with drug addiction. He had undergone two gastric bypass operations to control his weight and received treatment for alcohol abuse.
“The greatest thing football has ever sad. RIP Diego,” Maluma wrote under a photo of him with the star. “We’re going to miss you a ton, strength to your family.”
J Balvin kept it simple, posting a photo of Diego and writing, “Rest in peace.”
The Kid Mero also posted about the loss, tweeting a video of Maradona’s “Goal of the Century” and writing, “RIP TO THE OG.”
Maradona is survived by his longtime partner, Veronica Ojeda, two daughters, two sons, and his former wife, Claudia Villafane.