DIEGO-ING, going, gone! Memorabilia fans are pumped up for the sale of a deflated ball – the one netted by Maradona’s “Hand of God” .
AFPNostalgic football followers could buy this 1986 ball for a seven-figure sum[/caption]
PA:Press AssociationEngland were stunned and stung twice by Maradona in the 1986 World Cup quarter-final – by this ‘Hand of God’ goal and then his amazing solo effort[/caption]
Now the ball will be up for sale in the USA on February 8 after failing to sell in London two months, despite a £2m bid.
Previously owned by match referee Ali Bin Nasser, its starting price is $600,000 dollars (£485k).
Diego Maradona, who died aged 60 just over two years ago, notoriously handled the opening goal of the Mexico City showpiece.
He jumped and bent his arm to flick the ball in when Three Lions’ keeper Peter Shilton seemed sure to meet it first.
Shilton never forgave Maradona – not helped by the wizard then weaving through from halfway to make it 2-0 with one of the greatest goals ever.
Gary Lineker replied in vain for England, before the South Americans went on to win the tournament, beating West Germany 3-2 in the final.
The adidas ball, which is now deflated, was held by controversial ref Bin Nasser from the date of the game, June 22 1986.
But it’s now going on display for an auction by Goldin.
The company’s founder Ken Goldin said: “This ball is central to arguably the most iconic moment in sports history
“With Lionel Messi heroically leading Argentina to its latest World Cup triumph, we anticipate renewed interest in the legend of Maradona and of the ball that changed soccer forever.”
Maradona’s match top sold for $9.3million eight months ago – a record for sporting memorabilia.
The ball has “Official World Cup Ball 1986 Ballon Officiel Coupe du Monde 1986” stamped in black on one pentagonal panel.
On another panel is the name of the match venue – “Azteca Mexico”.