Diego To Coach UAE Club Al Wasl




Diego Maradona

Diego Maradona

Diego Maradona was hired recently to coach United Arab Emirates club Al Wasl for two years.

Maradona has been out of coaching since leading Argentina to the World Cup quarterfinals last year and will be in charge when the next season opens in September.

Maradona was captain of Argentina and the team had won the 1986 World Cup in Mexico, but a ballooning waistline later slowed his explosive speed and he retired in 1997. Before taking over as coach of Argentina in 2008, he had only coached Deportivo Mandiyu in 1994 and Racing Club in 1995. In both he cases he left before his contract was up. Under Maradona, Argentina’s results were mixed and the team slumped to two of its worst losses; a 6-1 hammering by Bolivia in World Cup qualifying and a 4-0 quarterfinal loss to Germany at the final tournament in South Africa. Since the world cup coaching job last year, he was removed at the coach and from then he has been linked to several coaching vacancies, including Iran’s national team and English clubs Blackburn and Fulham.

Quoting Al Wasl chairman Marwan Bin Bayat, “Al Wasl Sports Club has become synonymous with achievements of this caliber, and we are very pleased to be welcoming Maradona to a long line of accolades in the club’s history. This partnership embodies the vision of the club as it embraces forward thinking developments in the region to establish unprecedented standards for the sport.”

Maradona has already visited the club’s training facility and had been in talks for several days. None of Al Wasl officials are disclosing proper details of the contract, saying only that it was for two years and that he would be responsible for leading the club “to new heights.”

The club is chaired by Sheik Ahmed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (a brother of the Dubai ruler), and has been looking for a coach since firing Sergio Farias in March. Al Wasl said that Maradona has left the country and could not be reached for comment. He is expected back next month.

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