Dubai: The Dubai Sports Council (DSC) has paid special tribute to the legendary Diego Maradona on eve of the UAE National Day celebrations.
The DSC has taken to Instagram to recall the late football legend’s inculturation during his stay in the UAE.
“Coinciding with the celebrations of UAE National Day, we recall the participation of the late Argentine football legend, Diego Maradona, in previous Dubai Sports Council National Day celebrations,” the caption says under a video depicting Maradona’s participation during the 42nd UAE National Day celebrations in 2012.
The embedded video shows Maradona joining a group of emirati youth in a traditional ‘Al Ayyala’ folk dance that is accompanied with traditional music. Maradona is at ease - swaying to the rhythm and beat as the troupe mark the UAE National Day celebrations eight years back.
The 60-year-old Maradona died following a heart attack last Wednesday at his home in Tigre near Argentina’s capital, Buenos Aires. His death came barely two weeks after he underwent brain surgery.
Maradona first landed in the country as coach of Al Wasl Club, but parted ways with the Cheetahs after just over one season. He then took over as Dubai’s Honorary Ambassador of Sports, attending high-profile sporting events.
Shaikh Mansoor Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Sports Council (DSC) was among the first to take to social media while offering his condolences to the star’s family and loved ones. Shaikh Mansoor was grateful to Maradona for sharing “his talent with us here in the UAE”.
“RIP Diego Maradona. The world has lost a legend. We are proud that he had shared his talent with us here in the UAE. Sending our deepest condolences to his family and loved ones,” Shaikh Mansoor’s tweet read.
After his 14-month stint at Al Wasl, Maradona had taken over as head coach at Fujairah Club for one season. Both clubs posted tributes to him, while the Arabian Gulf League (AGL) described him as “footballing great”.