Diego Maradona’s 1986 World Cup Golden Ball trophy to go on auction


The symbol of, for many, the world’s greatest footballer Diego Maradona’s greatest achievement to go on auction at the world famous Aguttes International Auction House in Paris, France, 6 June 2024.

Diego Maradona receiving his Adidas Golden Ball trophy at the Lido in 1986. Photo: Presse Sports

This is the most important individual distinction awarded to Maradona for a tournament in which he captained Argentina to World Cup victory, scored the ‘Goal of the Century’ and the infamous ‘Hand of God’ goal against England in the politically charged quarter-final encounter.

Jorge Burruchaga, Argentinian teammate of Diego Maradona and scorer of the winning goal at the 1986 World Cup says, “At that 1986 World Cup, Diego shone like never before or since in his career; it was his monument. We knew we had the best player in the world, there was no doubt about it, we knew it for a fact.”

“My favourite recollection of this World Cup is the second goal he scored against England, which remains the most beautiful in history for me because you must consider the state of the pitch, the altitude, the context between the two countries, and what he managed to do… He breezed past six players… It was divine. On that day, he created a lasting legacy for all Argentinian sportsmen and women, not just footballers, showing just how much, you have to fight to be worthy of wearing the Argentine jersey.”

Maradona and “the hand of God”, followed 4 minutes later by the goal of the century. This double against England in 1986 put him firmly in the annals of history. Photo: Presse Sports

Diego Armando Maradona was named “Player of the 20th Century” by FIFA, along with Pelé, and this trophy symbolizes his greatest achievement and his greatest ever goal.

Since the 1982 FIFA World Cup, the Adidas Golden Ball has rewarded the best player of the tournament, and thus constitutes one of the most prestigious individual distinctions in the world of football.

Maradona received the Adidas Golden Ball trophy at Lido (Paris, France) on November 13, 1986, as the best player of the World Cup. A unique piece in the history of football, this award given to the most emblematic player of this sport, alongside Pelé, constitutes a first in the art market: no Adidas Golden Ball trophy has been presented at auction, until today. The FIFA Museum (Zurich, Switzerland) preserves the Adidas Golden Ball from 1990.

While the Adidas Golden Ball changes design at each World Cup, the 1986 trophy uses the designs of the official Adidas “Azteca” ball used for this World Cup in Mexico.

At a recent auction, the shirt worn by Diego Maradona during the 1986 World Cup match against England, was sold for a reported figure in region of $7 million. It was sold by former England player Steve Hodge who exchanged shirts with Maradona after the classic world Cup match with Maradona scoring the ‘Hand of God’ goal and the ‘Goal of the Century.’ The Adidas Golden Ball trophy encompasses and marks all of that history.

François Thierry, sports expert for Aguttes Auction House said: “Used far too often wrongly, the word “legend” fits Diego Maradona perfectly. He is to football what Muhammad Ali is to boxing or Michael Jordan to basketball, an icon who goes far beyond the boundaries of his sport. He is certainly one of the most human athletes we have ever known, with his strengths and weaknesses. The golden kid “El Pibe de Oro” (The Golden Boy) also nicknamed “the God of football”, is a special case in the history of world football, a raw and instinctive talent, in a career punctuated by strokes of brilliance with both success and excess. The history of football with a capital H is closely linked to that of Maradona.”

Adidas Golden Ball trophy for Diego Maradona as best player of the Mexico 86 World Cup. Photo: Presse Sports
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