“The Golden Kid” of Albiceleste, Argentina’s football team, set the city on fire when he joined SSC Napoli. A private temple, which can be visited by appointment, pays homage to him… Extract from the magazine “8:30 p.m. in celebrations” of December 17, 2022.
To visit the private museum dedicated to Argentine footballer Diego Maradona (1960-2020), who set SSC Napoli on fire from 1984 to 1992, you have to go to a working-class area, off the tourist trail, of the city that made it its eternal round ball icon. Massimo Vignati holds the keys and receives only by appointment: “Here is the sanctuary of the dios, he told the magazine ‘8:30 p.m. in celebrations’ (replay), crossing himself before entering. There you go very important memories. His shoes, his shirt from the semi-final in Monaco, the bags and shoes from the 1986 World Cup…”
“There is his cup and his coffee machine, his captain’s armband, very important, and the shoes of Diego’s last World Cup, he explains while continuing the visit of this lair exclusively dedicated to the cult of El Pibe de Oro (The Golden Kid). And here is the jersey he gave me because I was a ballboy for seven years. And he brought it to me and said, ‘With this , you will no longer be wet.’ It’s very valuable, but Maradona, we love it, we don’t sell it. It’s like my children and my mother. We don’t sell it. I don’t know how much it’s worth. It’s a priceless.”
The attacking midfielder who shook all opposing defenses
“Imagine that they sold the ball from the ‘Hand of God’ final for 2.5 million euros [on June 22, 1986, in Mexico City, during the quarter-final of the World Cup between Argentina and England. The number 10 of the Albiceleste scored well with the hand and not with the head…] And a t-shirt sold for 8 million euros! I don’t have any tattoos on my body but a tattoo in the heart to remember him,” said Massimo, gently straightening a small sticker representing the attacking midfielder measuring 1.65 meters who made all the opposing defenses tremble.
“I was lucky that mom was Diego’s governess for seven years, specifies the guide of this temple. And her dad was the goalkeeper of the San Paolo stadium and especially of the locker rooms. Mom took care of everything: from cleaning, maintenance, shopping, what he wanted to eat. And my cousins and my sisters looked after his children”, explains Massimo Vignati whose family life still revolves around this Argentinian footballer considered as one of the of the best players in football history.