Wednesday October 12 2016
Maradona 'stars' in Match for Peace

Diego Maradona provided an assist for Francesco Totti, then got into a row with Sebastian Veron in a United for Peace charity match.

The Stadio Olimpico in Rome hosted the encounter between top stars, both current and retired, organised by Pope Francis.

It took all of one minute to open the scoring, as Maradona spread the play for Stefano Mauri and the assist was met by Antonio Di Natale.

The White Team equalised with Kanoute’s header, then the moment the crowd had been waiting for: Maradona’s through ball was curled in from the edge of the box by Totti.

“I’ve played with Maradona. I can retire happy now!” laughed the Roma captain.

Bojan Krkic ensured it was 2-2 at the break with a delightful lob over Mondragon.

There was a strange incident as the teams left the pitch at half-time, as Maradona and Veron started arguing and had to be pulled apart by teammates as they entered the tunnel.

“It was fine in the locker room, they were laughing together during the break,” insisted Mauri.

Maradona was back out for the second half and got to play alongside his son, Diego Maradona Junior.

Hernan Crespo’s header and a Nicolas Andre Burdisso daisy-cutter had it at 3-3 before Fernando Cavenaghi’s decider, shaking off Burdisso to go clear on goal.

Blue Team 3-4 White Team

Di Natale 1 (B), Kanoute 5 (W), Totti 22 (B), Bojan 34 (W), Crespo 67 (W), Burdisso 68 (B), Cavenaghi 78 (W)

Blue Team: Mondragon; Cafù, Aldair, Burdisso, Candela; Taddei, A Carbone, Mauri; Maradona, Di Natale, Totti (Han Wei Chen 46)

White Team: Bizzari; Zambrotta, Marquez, Sanchis, Abidal; Davids, Veron, Bojan; Ronaldinho; Crespo, Kanouté