The jersey worn by the late Argentine soccer legend Diego Maradona when he scored his infamous ‘Hand of God’ goal has sold at auction, smashing the record for the most expensive piece of sports memorabilia in history.
The number 10 shirt worn by Maradona – considered by many one of the greatest players of all time – sold for $9.3 million at a Sotheby’s auction.
It’s the story behind the infamous goal, as well as the second Maradona scored in that same match, which adds the value to the shirt.
The shirt couldn’t have been made famous in more of a high-stakes match, with it being donned by Maradona in the 1986 World Cup quarter-final against England.
The first goal of the game came in the 51st minute of the game and in a cunning way from Maradona that made it a truly iconic moment.
After England midfielder Steve Hodge intercepted a pass from Maradona near goal and it flicked up off his boot, the five-foot-five Argentine managed to place himself right under the ball as it came back down.
Managing to evade goalkeeper Peter Shilton, Maradona got his hand onto the ball and knocked it into the back of the net.
Although it should have been called for a handball – and likely offside as well – he was so cunning in managing to get it off that referees didn’t notice; VAR technology didn’t exist at the time to highlight what actually happened as well.
Story of Maradona’s most famous goals
When asked about the goal after the match, Maradona commented that it was scored “a little with the head of Maradona, and a little with the hand of God” giving the goal its name.
Just four minutes later, Maradona managed to get the ball in the back of the net again, scoring what was eventually voted the ‘Goal of the Century’ due to Maradona managing to evade multiple England defenders and goalie Shilton with his skilful dribbling on a long run from midfield.
Although Gary Lineker managed to claw a goal back for England in the 81st minute, Argentina went on to win the match and the World Cup that year.
Hodge, who inadvertently flicked the ball to Maradona for the infamous goal, held onto the jersey since asking for it after the match and was the seller. The buyer remained anonymous.
Prior to the sale of the famous jersey, the most expensive piece of sports memorabilia in history was the original Olympic Games manifesto sold for $8.8 million followed by a pair of Babe Ruth baseball jerseys.
Maradona, nicknamed ‘the Golden Boy’, died in November 2020 at the age of 60.