The death of Diego Maradona has come as a massive blow to football fans across the world, prompting an outpouring of grief even as others attempt to hold on to the ace sportsman through memorabilia. Over the last few days there have been countless news articles about how people are reacting in the wake of his demise - from observing a minute of silence before a match or renaming stadiums to converting a hotel room where he had once stayed into a museum. The current craze however seems to be bidding on items that had been owned or used by the 'Hand of God'.
According to a Reuters report, the shirt worn by Diego Maradona when he scored his famous “Hand Of God” goal against England at the 1986 World Cup in Mexico was now up for grabs - if one was ready to shell out $2 million. The report quotes David Amerman of the Goldin Auction in New Jersey to add that the owner is "looking for a $2 million private sale".
Currently displayed at England’s National Football Museum, the owner of this particular item is former England player Steve Hodge who got it from Maradona after the match. The two had swapped shirts in the aftermath of the match.
But while this jersey is a massive item to own, this is not the only thing up for grabs. A quick perusal of ebay shows countless items for sale, with many being priced at thousands of dollars. As Amerman adds, a copy of Maradona’s rookie soccer card was recently sold by them for $10,000. And the prices are only rising higher.
In the meantime, others have taken to the memorabilia craze in different ways, frequenting shrines to the football icon or wishing to step into his shoes with a sojourn to a hotel where he had once stayed. A Kerala hotel for instance, has announced its intent to convert a hotel room at the Blue Nile hotel near Payyambalam beach where Maradona stayed in 2012 into a museum. Over the years, many football fans had stayed in the “Maradona Suite” of the hotel.
Not all fans however have displayed acceptable behaviour in recent days. A trio of funeral workers in Argentina for example have been fired and are reportedly getting death threats after they posing for photos alongside the body of soccer star Diego Maradona shortly before his funeral.