Passages of a painful farewell to El Pelusa of the Football’s World

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Passages of a painful farewell to El Pelusa of the Football’s World
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27 November 2020
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The world of football may, judging by its importance for human beings, be regarded as a giant Jupiter or if we like, be compared to the Asteroid B-612.

In any case, there is a well-deserved place reserved for Diego Armando Maradona, who may actually be resting next to El Principito, playing with the ball, or, with his hyperactive behavior, making another sprint like the one he did in the FIFA World Cup held in Mexico in 1986, considered the best goal ever.

“Goal! Goal! I want to cry! Oh Dear God, Long life Football! What a great goal! Diegoooooal! Maradona! Oh, I am sorry. It makes me cry…Maradona, what a wonderful sprint in the greatest goal ever…Cosmic Kite… what planet did you come from to leave so many Englishmen in the dust? To make the whole country into one great, clenched fist, shaking, shouting for Argentina? . . . Diegoal! Diegoal! Diego Armando Maradona! Sweet Lord, thank you for the game of football, for Maradona, for these tears, and for this Argentina 2, England 0.”?

Unfortunately for me, I had to watch Maradona’s wonderful goal in the replay several times, as the goal Hand of God.

But eternity has no accurate time, wanders the path of time and carries a whole nation (Argentina) on his shoulders; a belief (football); ardent fans; the most unemotional English Lord, one of those who suffered that Golden Kid in such an unforgettable afternoon in Mexican soil.

De Zurda mourns his death. His best leg was that on the left side of his body, the same side where his heart was. His play with the ball stick to his incredible left leg carried with it his humble origin, with flaws, with a huge sense of solidarity, like a Quixote, inside and outside the pitch.

His voice never hid his feelings, no matter how controversial these might be, and no one could ever silence his left boot.

This kite mocked on physics, with the tattoo of Che in his right shoulder and Fidel tattooed in his left leg.

Close friend of Cuba, this man was always ready to revisit it, even after his most recent surgery. With such longing for our island, he had so many common viewpoints with our equally-eternal Commander.

The very same Cuba of friendly matches, natural hugs and smiles. This always fertile soil where The Golden Kid found, due to health or just pleasure, a warm and loyal comfort place.

The echo of sadness is bigger than ourselves, a tsunami with aftershocks everywhere in the world from Australia to Africa, from the Patagonia to Siberia, as if Maradona’s legacy were similar to that of a supernatural being.

But no, Maradona is a weird mixture of earthy human being and supernatural footballer, with contrast, demons and bad decisions. He was always acquainted of his origin and the need to build a better world at all costs.

Oh Cosmic Kite, we are all mourning you. Pelé told you he will meet you in Heaven to play one last game. Messi speaks of an inconsolable grief, but an endless legacy; Cristiano labeled you as a unique magician with the ball; the Argentina’s president stated:

“Diego was Argentina in the world. He gave us joy and we will never be able to repay him for so much joy.”

It seems impossible to match football with politics, to eradicate racial, classist barriers. And he did so, and not only within all the games he played in his career, from his genesis with Los Cebollitas…but also he put on another jersey, which built bridges, twinned nations, and united all of us, footballers, fans, tycoons and poor people in the most beautiful sport in the world.

Naples shows its eternal gratefulness by changing the name of the stadium San Paolo to Diego Armando Maradona’s from now on.

Oscar Ruggeri stated:

“A star in every sense. If there was a guy in the world who honor the captaincy of a team, he was the one. I say it because I was also a captain. We, the captains, have this feeling, that we are different. And he was the best of all of us. He made us so happy.”

That Maradona in Boca Juniors, with that feeling of satisfaction when he said: “a win against River feels like when your mom wakes you with a morning kiss.”

That’s the God of each of us. And I confirm that I have never been a fan of the Argentinean squad. I remember the elimination of Argentina in Italy 1990 and the United States in 1994, where Maradona played with the national squad in a World Cup for the last time.

He won many titles. He was the symbol of the best generation of footballers in Argentina. The kite who amazed everyone, won everything, and defined himself like this:

“If I die, I want to be born again and I want to be a footballer. And I want to be Diego Armando Maradona again. I am a player who has given people joy and that is enough and I have enough.”

Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Díaz / CubaSí Translation Staff

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