FIFA have slammed Maradona for his comments directed at referee Mark Geiger following England’s last 16 penalty shootout win over Colombia on Tuesday.
After the match had ended 1-1 where Harry Kane’s 57th-minute penalty was called out in stoppage-time by Yerry Mina, the Three Lions went on to win the shootout 4-3.
Maradona, who is attending the World Cup as a FIFA ambassador, hit out at the American official who awarded England’s penalty after Kane had been wrestled to the ground, saying Colombia were the victims of a “monumental theft”.
The Argentina legend also criticised FIFA’s head of referees, Pierluigi Collina.
A statement from football’s governing body read: “FIFA is extremely sorry to read such declarations from a player who has written the history of our game.”
Maradona had earlier remarked: “Today I saw a monumental robbery on the pitch… a fatal mistake for a whole country.
“Here’s a gentleman who decides, a referee who, if you Google him, shouldn’t be given a match of this magnitude… Geiger, an American, what a coincidence.
“I’m just sorry for the whole Colombian people. I cheered Colombia’s goal as if I had headed it myself.”