Mexico 1986


Mexico 1986 was certainly the best World Cup for Maradona. He was the star, the most known player in the world, everybody was waiting for him to express his game and delight the world. And he did it. What he showed in Mexico 86 is something incredible. He was the number one in the world, there is no doubt about it.

The first match for Argentina was against South Korea and Argentina easily won 3-1 with goals by Valdano (6. and 46.) and Ruggeri (18.). The second match was against Italy, the World Cup holders. Italy scored a penalty with Altobelli (7.), but Maradona equalized (34.) with a sly touch past the Italian goalkeeper Galli. Argentina was already qualified, but deserved to win the last group match against Bulgaria 2-0 with goals by Valdano (4.) and Burruchaga (72.). Argentina qualified for the 2nd round and they had to face Uruguay.

The 2nd round match against Uruguay was a tough one: 1-0 for Argentina, with a goal by Pasculli (41.), and Argentina was in quarter-finals.

June 22, 1986 is a date that will always be remembered for soccer fans: Argentina vs. England. It was 0-0 at half time, but what happened in the first ten minutes in the second half is something memorable. It was the 50. minute when a ball in the area was touched by Diego with a hand (the "Hand of God") -photo!- : he jumped high and touched with the fist. The ball went into the net, the referee didn't notice this and confirmed the goal! I will never forget this scene. The "Hand of God" goal is memorable. But I also will never forget the second goal against England: it was the 54. minute when Maradona scored the best goal in the history of soccer (-photo-!): He started from midfield, passed 5 English players and then the goalkeeper and rolled it into the net! This was an incredible goal, really. Argentina was 2-0 and that was enough to win though Lineker scored a goal for England in 81. minute. Argentina was in semifinals!

In semifinals Argentina played against Belgium. Argentina won 2-0 with two goals by Diego Maradona (51. and 63. minute), who rolled twice the ball past Pfaff, the Belgian goalkeeper. Maradona was the man of the tournament and Argentina was in the World Cup final!

In the other semifinal West Germany won against France 2-0 and then on June 29 there was the final! Argentina vs. West Germany! It was a beautiful match: Argentine defender Brown scored the first goal (32.) and at half time it was 1-0; Valdano scored the 2-0 (56.), but West Germany scored 1-2 with Rummenigge (73.) and then equalized with Völler (82.). Everybody thought: now there will be extra time. But Diego gave an incredible ball through to Burruchaga who scored the 3-2 sliding it past the keeper (84.)! Argentina was World Champion!

Who can forget Maradona kissing the World Cup and rising it to the sky (-photo-)? He deserved it. What he had showed in the tournament is something difficult to explain. He was really the number one in the world!

Here is the photo of the triumph!

==>Italia 1990

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