DIEGO MARADONA virtually signed for Sheffield United earlier than the Blades pulled out of a rare switch… over £40,000.
And the stingy Bramall Lane board’s refusal to stump up the additional money had knock-on results for the world of soccer.
Diego Maradona may have joined Sheffield United from Argentinos Juniors in 1978 however the Blades board refused to stump up the additional £40,000Credit score: Icon Sport – Getty
As reported by The Guardian, United boss Harry Haslam went to Argentina on a scouting mission in 1978.
His eye was caught by a 17-year-old Maradona, then on the books at Argentinos Juniors the place had made his skilled debut two years earlier.
Haslam was so impressed that he provided £200,000 immediately to convey Maradona to Yorkshire.
However then within the Second Division, the Blades determined in opposition to matching Haslam’s provide.
Because of this, Haslam signed Maradona’s compatriot Alex Sabella, a midfielder from River Plate.
Sarcastically, Sheffield United paid £160,000 for Sabella – simply £40,000 lower than the charge Haslam agreed to pay Argentinos Juniors for Maradona.
Sabella impressed at Bramall Lane however couldn’t stop relegation into the Third Division on the finish of the 1978-79 season.
He was bought to Leeds the next yr for a tidy £400,000 whereas United dropped down once more into the fourth tier.
Maradona, in the meantime, stayed on at Argentinos Juniors till 1981, scoring 115 targets in 167 appearances, earlier than becoming a member of Boca Juniors for round £2million.
A yr later he signed for Barcelona for a world-record charge of £5m and the remaining is historical past.
His outrageous technical ability made Maradona one of many very biggest footballers of all time whereas his massive personality and antics made him one of the most controversial, too.
His tragic death on Tuesday following heart failure led to an outpouring of grief and sadness across the football world, significantly in his homeland of Argentina the place he was revered like no different.
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Maradona joined Boca Juniors in 1981 after which returned to the membership to finish his professionCredit score: Reuters
Harry Haslam, center pictured with Eric Morecambe and Ernie Sensible, noticed the teenage famous person on a scouting journey to ArgentinaCredit score: Information Group Newspapers Ltd