Saturday, September 12, 2009

Jesus as Maradona's replacement?

The headline reads, Only Jesus or Virgin Mary can replace Maradona, says Argentina boss. I don't know the impact of such a coaching change. In South America at least, reverence for the new Argentinian coach will last only briefly - after all, this is soccer! But some may consider this change quite natural (super?) - Maradona is the one who scored the "hand of God" goal against England in the 1986 World Cup (see the video of this goal here, and to be fair also watch the "goal of the century" (no shortage of superlatives) that came only 4 minutes after the "hand of God" goal).

Here is what prompted the speculation of Jesus as Maradona's replacement:

Diego Maradona's faltering reign as Argentina coach would only be ended by the arrival of either Jesus Christ or the Virgin Mary, team manager Carlos Bilardo said in a bizarre exchange with reporters.

"If Jesus Christ returned or the Virgin Mary, then I'd accept it. Otherwise, no,'' said Bilardo.

Maradona skippered Argentina to the 1986 World Cup title when Bilardo was coach. But the 48-year-old has come under intense pressure with the team's 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign threatening to fall apart.

Since he took over, Maradona has overseen four defeats in six qualifiers, two of which came in the last week against Brazil and Paraguay.

Read the full story here.


Don said...

To be fair to Mardona, the South African region is a lot more competitive today than it was in '86. On the other hand, miracle working aside, I think Jesus would be a terrible coach. Israelis play decent football, but I don't think the game was in a very developed state when he was around.

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