Diego Maradona‘s death last week at the age of just 60 has triggered many emotive stories and anecdotes about the man, with one interesting story regarding his first Barcelona shirt coming to light thanks to a report from Mundo Deportivo.
Maradona’s debut for the Blaugrana was against Mallorca, where he came up against the former Real Zaragoza player Jose Carlos Barrachina. A friend of his son named Luis Ansorena was the one to tell the story.
Barrachina was marking Maradona on the pitch, and by all accounts did an effective job in keeping the young Argentine under control.
Ansorena said that Barrachina told him that his tactic against Maradona was to keep him talking, so he asked him all kinds of questions about what he wanted to do in Spain, what he expected from his signing and other things of that nature.
Maradona, apparently, was more than happy to engage with Barrachina and was thus less focused on the game. At the end of the match the entire Mallorca team descended upon Maradona to ask for his shirt, but he voluntarily gave it to Barrachina.
Therein lies the story of where Maradona’s first match-worn shirt in Spanish football resides, and it’s one in keeping with the nature of one of the biggest characters to ever grace the game.
Featured image courtesy of FC Barcelona.