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Diego Maradona's son asks Lionel Messi to give up number 10 shirt at Barcelona and Argentina

FOOTBALL By Mirror | December 3rd 2020

Argentina's coach Diego Maradona celebrates with Argentina's Lionel Messi after their 2010 World Cup second round soccer match against Mexico at Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg June 27, 2010. [Reuters, David Gray]

Diego Maradona’s son has called on Lionel Messi to give up the No.10 shirt as a tribute to his father after his death.

Maradona died last week aged 60 at his home in Argentina with heartfelt tributes pouring in from around the football world.

Former Chelsea manager Andre Villas-Boas raised eyebrows on the night of Maradona’s death when, after a win for his side Marseille, he suggested the No.10 be retired from all football by FIFA.

And whilst such a move looks unlikely, one of Maradona’s sons believes his former clubs should adopt the tribute.

Diego Armando Maradona Sinagra, born in Napoli as a result of an affair between the Argentinian superstar and his mother, was asked whether the No.10 shirt should be retired in his honour.

“In the teams where he played, I think so, including Barça. I have no doubt,” he said (via Mundo Deportivo).

That would mean Messi giving up his iconic No.10 shirt he has worn for both Barcelona and Argentina and drawn comparisons with Maradona.

Football - Germany v Argentina FIFA World Cup Quarter Final - South Africa 2010 - Green Point Stadium, Cape Town, South Africa - 3/7/10 Argentina coach Diego Maradona and Lionel Messi (R) look dejected at the end of the match after failing to reach the semi finals. [Images, Jason Cairnduff]

Messi paid an emotional tribute to Maradona after his goal at the weekend, removing his shirt to unveil a Newell’s Old Boys shirt and recreating Maradona’s celebration from his debut goal for the club.

Messi watched on from the stands as a kid as Maradona opened his account for Newell’s Old Boys as a teenager, and Maradona’s son stated he liked the tribute “a lot”.

Several other tributes have been paid including Napoli looking to rename their stadium and the club Maradona managed at the time of his death, Gimnasia, beating Velez Sarfield.

“They have been very emotional days,” said Diego Jr, who first met Maradona in 2003 after tricking his way onto a golf course before the icon publicly recognised him as his son in 2016.

“The Leo thing was special, very nice. It got to me a lot, it made me cry.

“Also that of Naples; the triumph of Gimnasia; what happened in Boca, where Dalma (Maradona’s daughter) was ... Many were emotional.”

 

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