'Truly disgusting': England's response to Maradona tragedy slammed
Football fans have been left outraged by sections of the British media, over their reporting of Diego Maradona's death.
The tragic passing of the Argentine legend has rocked the sporting world, with social media inundated with tributes to the 60-year-old viewed by many as the greatest player the game has ever seen.
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The spotlight on Maradona shone almost as bright off the field as it did on, for the incomparably talented forward.
Controversy seemed to go hand-in-hand with Maradona's genius, with his infamous 'Hand of God' goal against England in the quarter-finals of the 1986 World Cup, etched into footballing history.
So too, the 'goal of the century' that followed and Argentina's famous World Cup triumph that came off the back of his brilliance.
Following his tragic passing, the sporting world has been paying tribute to one of, if not the greatest player to have graced a football pitch.
In England, however, several tabloids have opted to dwell on the negativity surrounding the player, rather than pay respect to his unquestionable football genius.
Fury over British media’s Maradona reporting
The Daily Star has come under arguably the heaviest criticism, after leading with a front page image of Maradona's infamous goal, with the headline: “Where was VAR when we needed it most?”
The front page also contains a subjective and unnecessary statement about him being the "second greatest footballer to ever grace this earth”, along with a disrespectful line about his 'Hand of God' goal.
“Yes, he was a cheat. But WHAT a bloody amazing cheat he was,” it read.
The Daily Express - while arguably not as inflammatory - still decided to make light of his death with a front page that read: "RIP: The eternal, flawed genius... now safe in the hands of God."
The British media's treatment of the legendary figure's death has sparked outrage on social media.
English Media at it again. The Daily Star decides to make a VAR joke instead of paying tribute to one of the greatest footballers of all time on their front-page.
Sickening and disgusting. pic.twitter.com/WchSmQzpH2
— 𝐀𝐅𝐂 𝐀𝐉𝐀𝐗 💎 (@TheEuropeanLad) November 25, 2020
I really hope that this is not the back page of the Daily Star tomorrow... Absolute scumbags of it is...🤬
“Maradona in the hands of God ages 60” sure it’s a play on words used to describe THAT goal, but have some damn respect SMH pic.twitter.com/47AwQ5XQcV
— Nathan (@NathyB1992) November 26, 2020
This is absolutely disgusting what’s the need seriously https://t.co/4JOOddpZuO
— Elliot Thompson (@elliotthompson0) November 25, 2020
The daily star and the sun are the worst news reports in England 🤦🏻♂️
— Sam➐ (@thfcsam_) November 25, 2020
“Maradona in the hands of God now” absolutely disgusting have some respect
— Donald🚐Beek (@gbn0079) November 25, 2020
"He was a cheat, but what a bloody amazing cheat he was." Bitter and blaming THAT goal and not the best WC goal ever scored...also in that game.
The Star & The Sun have always been trash
— Brendan McEvoy (@bmacky88) November 25, 2020
I am convinced English media are the most evil ignorant people on this planet
— Ole's Gunnar Sell You (@yogie_gee) November 25, 2020
gawd sometimes i hate being english when these tools are doing stuff like this and all the other stuff they do
— sol (@2sol4) November 25, 2020
This is truly disgusting from the Daily Star #Argentina
R.I.P Diego Maradona pic.twitter.com/BiHEpmSi71
— THE BLACK SALTIRE#FBSI (@80_mcswan) November 25, 2020
England legend’s touching tribute to Maradona
Gary Lineker is certainly one of many Englishman happy to leave the past where it belongs and pay tribute to the diminutive figure, who will forever be remembered as one of the giants of the sport.
Lineker, who played against Maradona in the 'Hand of God' game, tweeted: "By some distance the best player of my generation and arguably the greatest of all time.
"After a blessed but troubled life, hopefully he'll finally find some comfort in the hands of God. #RipDiego"
The England legend also spoke in glowing terms about Maradona in a touching segment for BT Sport in the UK.
"He had such an incredible passion for the game."
"I've never seen anyone have such a beautiful affection with a football."
A heartfelt tribute from @GaryLineker to the one and only Diego Maradona...
And a lovely story that sums up his genius ❤️ pic.twitter.com/ztAhYyNFIs
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) November 25, 2020
Maradona ended his playing career back in Argentina, returning to Boca. He had a brief and controversy-packed spell as Argentine national team coach from 2008 to 2010 before coaching in the Middle East and Mexico.
Years of drug use, overeating and alcoholism truncated his stellar career and altered his appearance from a lithe athlete who could slalom effortlessly through teams to a bloated addict who nearly died of cocaine-induced heart failure in 2000.
Maradona's recent health problems saw him admitted to hospital in La Plata, Argentina, earlier this month suffering from anaemia and mild dehydration.
A bleed in the brain was then discovered. He was released from hospital only to die a few days later.
Such was Maradona's legendary status in his homeland that Argentine President Alberto Fernandez declared three days of national mourning after the news of Maradona's death.
As well as guiding Argentina to World Cup success in Mexico in 1986, he also led the country to the final of the 1990 tournament in Italy, as well as managing them in South Africa in 2010.
Maradona's international playing career ended in shame when he failed a drugs test at the 1994 World Cup in the United States and he was notorious for a wayward lifestyle throughout his life.
He was also banned from football in 1991 after testing positive for cocaine while playing for Napoli.
However, he remained a revered figure at the Italian club, where he won two Serie A titles.
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