Argentina: Diego Maradona Named New Coach of National Team

Photo by JMRobledo and used under a Creative Commons license

For any Argentine that travels throughout the world, any conversation with a local resident usually includes mention of one surname: Maradona. Diego Maradona must be the most famous Argentine in the world, and anything that he does usually becomes news. It is even more newsworthy, when he is named the next Coach of the Argentine national football team. After the resignation of Alfio Basile due to less than stellar results, the Argentine Football Federation left many in suspense by taking its time in choosing between several candidates. Many Argentines are left wondering how the greatest footballer to play would fare as coach and ensure that the country qualifies for the World Cup 2010.

In the blog E-Blog [es], Leandro Zanoni defends the decision and says:

La Asociación del Fútbol Argentino (AFA) hizo justicia con la historia. Nadie hoy por hoy merece el puesto más que Diego…Grondona se dio cuenta de que hoy la selección necesita otra cosa, un golpe de timón, un motivador y un líder a quien respetar y no tanto título local acumulado.

The Argentine Football Federation (AFA for its initials in Spanish) made history in a just manner. There is no one today that deserves the spot more than Diego…Grondona (AFA president) realized that the national team needs something else, someone to take charge, a motivator, a leader who is respected and not so much one who has won a lot of local titles.

There is also a defense of Maradona in English at World Cup Blog.

On the other hand, BlogBis [es] criticizes the hiring of Maradona and says that there were better candidates:

Sobran entrenadores capacitados y profesionales en el país. Pero no se opta por primar la profesionalidad ni la capacidad sino por conceptos tales como “pasión por la camiseta”, “dá ánimos a los jugadores”, etc”… Como jugador hizo historia pero como entrenador ha sido lamentable. Pero sus antecedentes no valen aquí. La adoración endiosada es lo que ha ganado

There are more than enough trained and professional coaches in the country. They don't opt to value neither professionalism nor ability, but for concepts like, “passion for the jersey,” “motivate the players, etc.” … As a player, he made history, but as a coach he was pitiful. However, his record does not count here. The god-like adoration is what has won.

Other opinion on this subject can be found at the blog of Marcelo Gantman [es]; Cuaderno Contable [es]; Selección Deportiva [es]; y Empresas Contables [es].


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