Earlier this year, new footage emerged of an Argentine number 10 weaving his way through numerous defenders and scoring one of the greatest individual goals ever seen.
Minutes after scoring the infamous ‘Hand of God’ goal versus England, Diego Armando Maradona cemented his place in the pantheon of greats by demonstrating his sheer brilliance on a football pitch, at the highest level, during the 1986 World Cup.
The goal had been shown, replayed and celebrated from the same main angles for over 28 years, but earlier this year new footage was found showing the goal from a previously unseen angle, allowing us to enjoy its beauty in a whole new way.
Speaking in his autobiography, ‘El Diego’ had this to say about the goal:
Whenever I see it again I can’t believe I managed it, honestly. Not because I scored it but because it seems like a goal that just isn’t possible, a goal that you could dream of but never actually score.
I started off from the middle of the pitch, on the right; stepped on the ball, turned, and sneaked between Beardsley and Reid. At that point I had the goal in my sights, although I still had a few meters to go. I passed Butcher on the inside and from this point Valdano was a real help, because Fenwick, who was the last one, didn’t leave my side.
I was waiting for him to stand off, I was waiting to pass the ball – the logical thing to do. If Fenwick had left me, I could have given it to Valdano, who would have been one-on-one against Shilton. But he didn’t do that. So I faced him, then threw a dummy one way and went the other, towards the right…Fenwick tried to close in on me, but I carried on and I already had Shilton in front of me…and Shilton bought the dummy, he bought it. I’d scored the goal of my life.
With Argentina progressing through to the quarter-finals of this year’s World Cup, inspired by yet another star number 10, who’s to say that Lionel Messi won’t repeat the trick and emulate the goal again – as he did when wearing the Barcelona colours, earlier in his career?