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Arguably the greatest footballer of all time, Diego Maradona, has apologised for the “Hand of God†goal he scored against England in 1986. He also had some words for David Beckham and Ashley Cole, and branded Pele as “the enemy of all time.â€

Hand of God' & England Apology

Maradona's most (in)famous game during his glittering and eventful career came in the quarter-finals of the 1986 World Cup for Argentina against England.

The then Napoli star notoriously put his side in the lead by flicking the ball past Peter Shilton with his hand. He then added a simply stunning second by taking on half of the England team in what has been described as the best goal of all time.

Since the game Maradona has always refused to apologise for the handball, labelling it as the hand of God. More than two decades later the 47-year-old has finally said sorry.

“An English supporter came up to me this weekend, asked me for an autograph, and said, ‘You are a legend'.

“This made me very happy. Your people are so polite and kind despite the history between our countries,†Maradona told ‘The Sun'.

“If I could apologise and go back and change history I would do. But the goal is still a goal, Argentina became world champions and I was the best player in the world.

“I cannot change history. All I can do now is move on.â€

Drugs & Pele

Maradona also spoke about his notorious struggles with Cocaine in the past, an addiction that nearly cost him his life in 2004 when he had a massive heart-attack and fell into a coma.

“I lost a lot of my footballing talent to drugs," he admits. "If I had never touched cocaine I would have been three times as good a player.â€

Maradona has had a long and bitter feud with Brazilian legendary hero Pele. Diego has long accused Pele of being part of the ‘devil' family of FIFA.

The feud hit new heights in 2000 when FIFA conducted an internet fan poll to elect the ‘Player of the Century'.

Maradona won the poll but then FIFA changed the way in which the winner was chosen, and decided to give the prize to Pele. Maradona protested and eventually both players were presented with an award, with the Argentine claiming that his rival's trophy was worthless.

“There would be no debate about who was the best footballer the world had ever seen — me or Pele. Everyone would say me," he insisted.

“Pele is the 'enemy of all time'.â€

Beckham & Cole

Maradona also offered some forthright views on David Beckham and Ashley Cole.

“Beckham is a nice man and I'm sure he will reach 100 appearances for England. But he is just a good player, nothing more,†said Diego.

“He has a good long-range shot, but he's not a great player — he doesn't belong to the superior group of players.

“There are hundreds of Beckhams playing football all over the world.

"As for Cole, he needs to demonstrate he can forget girls and concentrate on football."

Robinson, McClaren & England's Euro 2008 Failure

Maradona was critical of former England manager Steve McClaren, saying he made a big mistake in the 3-2 defeat to Croatia that cost the Three Lions qualification to Euro 2008.

“Under Steve McClaren there was a problem. He wasn't a capable manager of the national team,†the ex-Napoli star continued.

“It was a big mistake to drop Paul Robinson for the Croatia game. Robinson would never have made the mistakes that Scott Carson did.

“Robinson is a very good goalkeeper who has had a few problems — but strikers would have thought twice about shooting at him from long range because doubt would have definitely entered their minds.

“With Carson they thought, ‘Who the hell is this player'? And then they will start to take shots from everywhere.â€

Legend Maradona won the World Cup with Argentina in 1986, while he also was instrumental in leading Napoli to the Serie A title in 1987 and 1990.
 

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“I lost a lot of my footballing talent to drugs," he admits. "If I had never touched cocaine I would have been three times as good a player.”


OMG' He was by far the greatest player ever 3 times better wow thats scary good.
im so glad i got to see him play.......Legend
 

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“There would be no debate about who was the best footballer the world had ever seen — me or Pele. Everyone would say me," he insisted.

Uhhh... I don't think he's the best.

"As for Cole, he needs to demonstrate he can forget girls and concentrate on football."

Kind of hypocritical considering the drugs he took...

I mean, yes, Maradona was a very talented player, but I still think there are two people who were better than him.
 

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RD.....not a fan of the great man himself?
Still bitter about 1986?
Despite what anyone says he was THE greatest footballer of ALL time.
His off the field antics were his own business.
The best goal EVER scored was the second one in the '86 World Cup game vs England: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3z-qm-Sb_4s
This brings back those wonderful memories :)
 

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Nobody has the right to judge anyone else without knowing the facts !!

We as fans think we own these players, we expect everything from them and
when they don't give it we judge them and put them down - we complain
because they want to live their own lives which is understandable.

Why did Maradonna take drugs ... ?

Nobody knows, nobody ever will ...

Maybe it was to get away from it all ...

Maybe it gave him some peace and enjoyment away from the bombardment of
fans wishes and the non-stop invasion of privacy from the media.

Don't tell me they get paid for this - thats rubbish !!

They earn these huge amounts of money because it is them who generate huge
amounts of cash !!

If you worked for a company - and through your own efforts you made 1 million
pounds for them every week - and they paid you 20,000 pounds a year would
you be happy ?

No you wouldn't ...

You would want 20,000 a week !!

So they get paid what they are worth !!

I have seen people here making bad remarks about Adrian Mutu Romanian boy.

He lost his wife and little baby and still the press push, push, push for more and
more from him - he resort to the drugs.....now he gets clean again and his life is
good again - but still they dig at him etc etc....

Maradonna took drugs yes - why he did this I have no idea - nor do you.

But no drug in the world would ever make someone as good as he was.

He IS and will ALWAYS be one of the best the world will ever see !!
 

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F*** him , I would gladly take Pele over him anyday! Maradonna would never ever score 1170goals in 13?? games, not only that, If kids of this generation think of him as a hero, who knows cocaine might even become legal
 
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