Updated: October 24, 2012 01:47 IST

Maradona gets a royal welcome

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THE LEGEND ARRIVES... Football fans lined up the streets to catch a glimpse of Diego Maradona when he landed in Kerala on Tuesday. Photo: S.K. Mohan
The Hindu THE LEGEND ARRIVES... Football fans lined up the streets to catch a glimpse of Diego Maradona when he landed in Kerala on Tuesday. Photo: S.K. Mohan

Football legend Diego Maradona arrived to a tumultuous welcome from thousands of crazy fans from all over the State here on Tuesday.

The Argentine World Cup-winning captain has landed in Kerala for the inauguration of a new showroom of Boby Chemmanur International Jewellers and Airlines, for which he is the brand ambassador.

Maradona, on a two-day trip to the State, arrived by a chartered helicopter from Kochi.

Tight security

Tight security was in place in the city, which saw a festive atmosphere with hundreds of fans pouring in from Kozhikode, Malappuram and Kasargode districts to catch a glimpse of their hero.

Around 2000 police personnel were on duty.

Maradona, who led Argentina to a World Cup triumph in 1986, waved to the crowd after landing at Kannur, a city which has hosted many international and national football tournaments.

The FIFA player of the 20th century, along with Pele, had been to India once before, for a function in Kolkata in 2008.

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Being an ardent lover of Diego Armando Maradona I was so thrilled in the morning due to God's presence in the God's own country. Since i hail from kerala, makes it even more special and on the other hand i was sad that i couldn't be a part of the 50k+ fans who thronged the stadium just to get a glimpse of Diego. In the morning I was going through a Latin newspaper(thanks to the google translate), in which it was written that: "Kerala, unlike other states in India where cricket is considered as the lone sport". I sincerely hope this creates some progress in the status of football in our country and I am sure we CAN find 11 world class talents from over 1 billion people. The question of the hour is...WHEN?

from:  Dheeraj
Posted on: Oct 24, 2012 at 16:10 IST

The scene (as watched in TV) is vivid in my mind. In one of the World cup matches (probably against England), there was a goal by Maradona, which was suspect to a section of the audience. Within minutes thereafter, Maradona takes control of the ball, in his half of the field, evades about five defenders and scores a solo goal on to the left corner of the opponent's net. It was a classic goal, replayed even today in YouTube, as a great goal pick.

from:  Dr P.Ramachandran
Posted on: Oct 24, 2012 at 04:14 IST
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