Argentina icon Diego Maradona had to be helped from his seat at St. Petersburg stadium and was reportedly treated for low blood pressure following Argentina’s win over Nigeria to seal qualification to the World Cup knockout stage.
Maradona appeared unable to walk from his seat under his own strength at the final whistle of the game at St. Petersburg Stadium, in which goals from Lionel Messi and Marcos Rojo sealed Argentina’s place in the Russia 2018 last 16.
In footage which emerged moments after the match ended, Maradona can be seen being assisted by a companion in the VIP box, where he is eased into a chair.
While the Argentine sports broadcaster ESPN claimed Maradona had been taken to hospital, other media described the incident as a scare and said Maradona was treated for low blood pressure in the stadium and left shortly afterwards.
However, according to the Argentina icon’s Instagram, the incident had occurred at halftime. “My neck hurt a lot and I suffered a decompensation. I was checked by a doctor and he recommended me to go home before the second half, but I wanted to stay because we were risking it all. How could I leave? I send a kiss to everyone, thanks for the support!” Maradona’s post reads.
Castellano | Italiano | Inglés Quiero contarles que estoy bien, que no estoy ni estuve internado. En el entretiempo del partido con Nigeria me dolía mucho la nuca y sufrí una descompensación. Me revisó un médico y me recomendó que me fuera a casa antes del segundo tiempo, pero yo quise quedarme porque nos estábamos jugando todo. ¿Cómo me iba a ir? Les mando un beso a todos, perdón por el susto y gracias por el aguante, hay Diego para rato! Voglio solo dirvi che sto bene, che non sono e non sono stato ricoverato. Durante l'intervallo della partita con la Nigeria ho avuto un forte dolore alla nuca e un mancamento. Un medico mi ha visitato e mi ha consigliato di tornare a casa prima del secondo tempo, ma ho deciso di rimanere perché ci stavamo giocando il tutto per tutto. Come sarei potuto andarmene? Un bacio a tutti e grazie per il supporto... Diego ci sarà ancora per un bel po'! I want to tell everyone that I am fine, that I am not, neither was I interned. In the halftime of the game against Nigeria, my neck hurt a lot and I suffered a decompensation. I was checked by a doctor and he recommended me to go home before the second half, but I wanted to stay because we were risking it all. How could I leave? I send a kiss to everyone, thanks for the support!
An exultant Maradona had already made headlines twice during the game with his reactions to La Albiceleste’s goals during the game.
Maradona appeared to exert his emotions skyward with his arms outstretched, before crossing them over his chest as if to bless himself, and then rolling his eyes into the back of his head as if possessed by an other-worldly force.
Maradona then sensationally gave a double middle finger salute to the crowd after Marcos Rojo scored a dramatic late winner to send Argentina through with just four minutes remaining.
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