World Cup 2014: Diego Maradona claims Fifa 'banned him' from the Maracana over criticism of organisation
Argentine legend claims he was refused entry due to 'ill will' of organisation
Wednesday 18 June 2014
Diego Maradona has claimed that Fifa officials turned him away from the Maracana on Sunday when he tried to attend Argentina's match with Bosnia.
Maradona, who reportedly attempted to go the match with his son Diego Fernando, has been making daily broadcasts from Brazil, regularly criticising Fifa's ethics and claims he was turned away due to their 'ill will' towards him.
“I was not allowed to go in to the game,” he told the Argentinian channel TyC Sports. “So I had to return to the hotel to see the second half. I did everything I could but they would not let us in.
“Someone just said no, it could not happen, so I had to watch it on TV. Hopefully we will get this resolved because I want to go and see Argentina in several more games.
“It is one thing to not be able to go to a game, and another to not be allowed to go. When there is goodwill, you’re allowed in but when there is ill will, it’s better to forget it and head back to the hotel, which it’s what we did.”
Maradona has previously said that Fifa's power over tournament host nation Brazil was “ugly, and people need to know it”.
“Fifa is a multinational that is eating the ball,” he said. “Countries can’t do anything against them. If Fifa decides where soft drinks must be sold, that’s where they have to be sold.”
The Argentine legend has also made several allegations specifically about president Sepp Blatter.
In response to the claims from Maradona, Fifa said it had no record of the alleged incident at the Maracana, telling local media: “We are not aware that he was not allowed in to the Maracanã. Perhaps he just tried the wrong door.”
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