Al-Jazeera chief slams Maradona

Al-Jazeera director Andre Wetzel believes that the appointment of Al-Wasl coach Diego Maradona was a marketing strategy which made no sense football-wise.

Diego Maradona

The Argentian legend began his stint as Al-Wasl coach with a 4-3 loss to reigning champions Al-Jazeera last Thursday, courtesy of an injury time winner from Brazilian striker Bare.

Maradona caught the attention on the sidelines during that match, arguing with the match officials, screaming out in jubilation when his side equalised and even juggling the ball to entertain the crowd.

Wetzel was understandably upset with the opposition coach, who arrived 20 minutes late for the post-match conference and blamed the organisers for it.

Wetzel told Voetbal International: "It's pure marketing. Wherever Maradona is, there is a camera, so I understand Al-Wasl's decision. But you can't call Maradona a coach, he's a circus act,

"On the other hand, I'm pleased that a competing club like Al-Wasl has a trainer who doesn't understand his job, but it's ridiculous how he behaves.

"After the match against Al-Jazeera he turned up for the press conference 20 minutes late."

Maradona recorded his first victory with a 3-0 win over Al-Wasl against newly-promoted Emirates in the Etisalat Cup on Thursday, but not without bringing attention to himself.

He told Al-Wasl fans prior to the match: "If you are scared then don't come and watch. You can stay at home and watch a comedy on DVD."

Before the match, Maradona continued his string of attention-grabbing acts, kicking out at a fan who tried to take a picture of the 1986 World Cup winning captain from behind a banner.

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