Diego Maradona out to emulate Napoli legacy at Al Wasl
Diego Maradona said he had an "ecstatic" time with his grandson Benjamin watching former club Napoli beat Juventus to win the Italian Cup on Sunday night, saying this title win has been a long time coming.
And the Argentine legend is hoping he can build the same kind of legacy with his team, Al Wasl, as Napoli have done since he enjoyed a trophy laden seven-year spell with the club from 1984-1991.
During that time, Maradona inspired the unfashionable Naples club to two Scudettos and UEFA Cup success, and he is hoping to have a similar impact at the Zabeel Stadium, albeit from the dugout.
“History does not happen because of one victory,” said Maradona, whose side are seeking their last chance of silverware this season in the GCC Cup, where they face Qatar’s Al Khor in the semi-finals on Wednesday.
“Napoli’s win over Juventus did not start yesterday. History started when I joined Napoli (in the 80s) and we were fighting relegation. I stayed there and we prepared a team that became competitive. This Cup win shows that Napoli are back to their winning ways and there is much more to come.
He added: "This is what I’m trying to do now with the board here at Al Wasl. We’re trying to create a more competitive team."
Maradona, who has been linked among other candidates, with the UAE national team job says he has not been contacted yet about the position. “I haven’t talked to any of the officials, there hasn’t been any contact with the FA,” said the Argentine.
“My only focus right now is our next match. Of course it’s an honour to be on that list of candidates, but so far I heard nothing. Everyone knows where I live so I’m easy to reach,” he added laughing. “but no one has contacted me yet.”