Diego Armando Maradona, one of the greatest soccer players of all time, died this morning. He was 60 years old.
His lawyer, Matías Morla, confirmed that the cause of death was a heart attack. He had undergone a difficult brain surgery earlier this month. Argentina’s president, Alberto Fernández, has declared three national days of mourning in response.
Maradona had many nicknames throughout his life and career: Pelusa, El Pibe de Oro, Barrilete Cósmico, El Diez, Marado, D10S. But the most simple of them, Diego, was and will remain more than enough to identify him. His many nicknames suggest he is not just synonymous with the sport he played. Maradona’s legend precedes his person.
He is perhaps best known for his performance at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico and his famed seven-year spell at Napoli. More personal aspects of his life played out in the international public eye, on screens, and in magazines even after quit the pitch.
Riddled with missteps, legal trouble, and struggles with substance abuse, his story is one of a man, imperfect as any, who rose above, even while trudging and tripping through hurdles.
He admitted to making many mistakes, but said in a celebrated speech, “La pelota no se mancha.”