The shirt, worn by Diego Maradona as he threw England’s two unforgettable goals out of the 1986 World Cup, including the so-called ‘Hand Of God’, is expected to fetch more than £4million at auction.
Aradona – one of the greatest footballers of all time, who died in November 2020 at the age of 60 – described his opening goal in the quarter-finals, when the ball hit the leaping Argentine’s left arm well before nestling in the net, as “a little with.” the head of Maradona and a little with the hand of God”.
He then scored the ‘Goal of the Century’ goal as he dribbled past a number of England players before scoring as Argentina sealed a 2-1 win in Mexico City en route to tournament victory.
Midfielder Steve Hodge, who accidentally flicked the ball to Maradona in the Hand of God game, swapped shirts with his rival in the tunnel after the game and has owned it ever since – although the piece has been on loan at the National Football Museum for the past 20 years in Manchester.
It will now go under the hammer at Sotheby’s in a special auction, open for bidding from 20 April, and go on public display at the auction house’s New Bond Street Gallery in London.
Sotheby’s describes the famous blue number 10 jersey on its website as being in “good overall condition consistent with heavy wear, sweat and sporting activity”, with “slight unraveling at hem at lower front of shirt and minor stains throughout”.
Hodge said: “I have been the proud owner of this item for over 35 years, ever since Diego and I swapped shirts after the famous game in the tunnel.
“It was an absolute privilege to have played against one of the greatest and greatest footballers of all time. It has also been a pleasure to share it with the public over the past 20 years at the National Football Museum where it has been on display.
“The ‘Hand of God’ shirt has a deep cultural meaning for the football world, the people of Argentina and the people of England and I’m sure the new owner will be very proud to own the most iconic football shirt in the world . ”
The game took place four years after Britain’s victory over Argentina in the Falklands War, making it meaningful for both countries.
In June 1986, 25-year-old Diego Maradona made history in what is now one of the most famous football matches in the world. Now the jersey he wore when he composed The Hand of God will break a record as it will be auctioned for the first time.https://t.co/9gIsVAtaK1
— Sotheby’s (@Sotheby’s) April 6, 2022
Brahm Wachter, Head of Streetwear and Modern Collectables at Sotheby’s, said: “The ‘Hand of God’ is truly a unique moment, not only in the history of the sport but also in the history of the 20th century.
“The moment, just after the Falklands conflict, resonated well beyond the world of football and in turn has inspired books, films and documentaries.
“Maradona is now recognized as one of the greatest footballers have ever played – and this particular game is an integral part of his legacy.”
He added: “It is the first time the shirt has been launched and Sotheby’s is honored to now be a part of the story of the item.”
The current record for every jersey worn during a game is held by a baseball jersey worn by New York Yankees star Babe Ruth, which sold at auction in 2019 for $5.6 million.
– The Sotheby’s auction is open for bids from April 20th to May 4th.
https://www.independent.ie/sport/soccer/international-soccer/diego-maradonas-hand-of-god-shirt-expected-to-fetch-over-4m-at-auction-41526934.html Diego Maradona’s ‘Hand of God’ shirt is expected to fetch over £4million at auction