Diego Maradona prepared to visit Pakistan, says manager
Pakistan Football Federation officials had said they would invite Diego Maradona after the legendary former player had criticised Argentina Football Association by comparing it to Pakistan's football fraternity.
Argentine football legend, Diego Maradona is prepared to visit Pakistan if he is officially invited, according to his manager.
Maradona on Friday compared Argentina Football Association (AFA) to Pakistan Football Federation (PFF) and said officials of both bodies knew little about football and the PFF responded by inviting him to visit Pakistan.
Maradona's manager Gustavo Amador Moure said he was willing to do this if invited through the proper channels.
Sardar Naveed, the communications and marketing manager of the PFF, said that Gustavo had sent an email to him asking him to send an official invitation for the 53-year-old football great.
"We would wait for the mandate from the PFF to schedule a meeting with Diego's lawyer and advance this situation as soon as possible," Moure, of the ABC Sports Agency, says in his e-mail.
Naveed said if something can be worked out and Maradona can visit Pakistan it will be a big boost for the sport in Pakistan.
"Just imagine the filip football will get if he comes to Pakistan even for a day. Football in Pakistan needs support from legends like Maradona," he said.
Naveed pointed out that Maradona had twice visited India but had never come to Pakistan.
"He is revered in Pakistan as a football legend and he will be surprised by his fan following in our country if he comes," Naveed said.
"The interest that would create for football in the country, especially the interest in Pakistani football, would be immense."
Naveed stated that the PFF would be sending the official invitation to Maradona very soon and urged the government to play their part in making it happen.
"This is an opportunity for the government of Pakistan to step in and make it happen for the growth of football in Pakistan," he said.
Maradona, who spearheaded Argentina to the 1986 FIFA World Cup, is the honorary sports ambassador for the Dubai Sports Council (DSC).