Kolkata: Diego Maradona’s trip to Kolkata was postponed for a third time today and the Argentine legend would now come on October 8 during the FIFA Under-17 World Cup.
If the trip finally materialises, it would coincide with the commencement of U-17 FIFA World Cup in Kolkata on October 8, when Chile face England and Iraq take on Mexico in two group F matches. Maradona was to kick off a football conclave here on October 3, with a galaxy of Indian celebrities before locking horns with cricket icon Sourav Ganguly in a much-hyped ‘Match for Unity’ in Barasat on October 5.
Citing his “sudden football obligation” in UAE, organisers today said Maradona has now committed to come on October 8 and stay till October 10 to fulfill his commitments in Kolkata. “To the people of Kolkata, I would like to tell you that due to my work obligations in the Arab Emirates, my visit to India on October 2 has been postponed,” read the English translation of a Spanish post on Maradona’s official Facebook page.
“I want to thank the authorities and all those who make possible my visit to their beloved country. See you soon #Kolkata, I wish you happy holidays!!!” Maradona’s visit was originally scheduled on September 19 before being postponed to October 2 and then deferred till October 5.
“The match was shifted because of Muharram and Durga Puja immersion. Now the match will be a closed door affair, where entry is by invitation only,” Vivek Kumar Agarwal, founder, Dhulaiwala Group, the title sponsors behind the event, had said.