5 Nov 2008

Maradona takes over as Argentina coach

9:01 am on 5 November 2008

It's official - Diego Maradona has been appointed coach of Argentina.

The decision by the national football federation was expected after Maradona said last week he was on the brink of being given the job.

However, he has had only two short stints as a coach in the mid 1990s, with Deportivo Mandiyu and Racing Club. His 23 games produced three wins.

Maradona's first game in charge will be a friendly against Scotland on 19 November at Glasgow.

In his homeland, Maradona, 48, is often considered to be greater even than Pele.

He scored the notorious "Hand of God" goal when Argentina defeated England 2-1 in the World Cup quarter-finals in 1986.

Argentina subsequently beat West Germany 3-2 in the final.

Maradona also inspired Napoli to their first league titles in 1987 and 1990 and the UEFA Cup in 1989.

He retired from professional soccer in 1997 after failing a doping test and almost died from cocaine-induced heart problems in 2000.