The world literally froze with shock on Wednesday as news of Diego Armando Maradona’s death filtered from his native Argentina.
Maradona, 60, reportedly died of a heart attack – according to an autopsy report leaked to the media – two weeks after a successful surgery to remove a blood clot from his brain.
Football stars have paid tributes to the Legend and former Super Eagles midfielder Sunday Oliseh, who was an opponent at a 1994 FIFA World Cup between Nigeria and Argentina, described Maradona as “exceptional”.
“It’s very sad and strangely it’s painful in a different kind of way, I just can’t seem to find the words for it at the moment,” Oliseh told footballlive.
“It’s strange, the feeling I’m getting is strange it’s painful somehow. ”
“I’ve been blessed to play against great players and even play with some in the same club, but he’s different; He has something that nobody else has.
“The way he moves, his decisions, the way he carries the team and just how his colleagues look at him. They don’t look at him like a teammate rather as if with him everything is possible. He is different, he is an exceptional player, he is unbelievable.”
On Thursday a coffin carrying the body of the 1986 World Cup winner arrived the Presidential Palace in Argentina where fans will be allowed to pay their final respects to the Iconic figure.
A number of monuments have been renamed in Maradona’s honor including the Buenos Aires stadium and Stadio San Paolo in Naples.
Boca Juniors turned off all the lights in La Bombonera apart from one.
Diego Maradona’s VIP box. ✨
— Football Tweet (@Football__Tweet) November 26, 2020
Three days of mourning have been declared by the Argentinian president Alberto Fernandez.
‘You took us to the top of the world. You made us immensely happy. You were the greatest of all,’ the leader tweeted. ‘Thanks for having existed, Diego. We will miss you for a lifetime.’
Maradona is survived by five children, including his daughters Dalma, 33, and Ganina, 31, by his first and only wife Claudia Villafane, 58, to whom he was married from 1984 to 2004.
He had his youngest son Diego Fernando with his long-term girlfriend Veronica Ojeda in 2013; while he only acknowledged Diego Junior, 34, and daughter Jana, 23, in the last five years.