In LéNA this week: Diego Maradona’s incredible Golden Ball

In LéNA this week: Diego Maradona’s incredible Golden Ball
In LéNA this week: Diego Maradona’s incredible Golden Ball

The “LéNA” program this week, available this Saturday with your newspaper “Le Soir” and now digitally. Discover the best of European journalism.

VSn June 6, a Parisian house, Aguttes, had planned to auction off the Golden Ball that the magazine France Football had offered to Diego Maradona after his exceptional performance during the 1986 World Cup in Mexico. Shortly after, the trophy disappeared for decades…

On October 26, 1989, eight members of the Neapolitan Misso clan parked a truck not far from Via Duomo. Around 2:30 p.m., they took the employees of the Banco della Provincia di Napoli hostage and went down to the basement. They will only manage to open sixty of the 400 chests. Two of them were owned by Claudia Villafañe, who married Maradona ten days later: among the stolen objects, the famous Golden Ball.

The gangsters then panicked when they learned who the trophy belonged to and decided to erase all traces of it… by melting it. The Golden Ball weighed no less than 5 kg and was made of pure 18-carat gold. Today, a one-kilo ingot costs around 70,000 euros. However, it turned out that this version was false and that the mafiosi had duped Maradona, their comrade, client, even partner in dubious affairs.

Then the ball appeared again. Aguttes explains that the seller bought it in Montmartre in 2016 for 500 euros, during a second-rate flea market.

When Maradona’s heirs learned that the auctions were going to take place, they did everything to prevent them, believing that this would make the auction house a fence since it would sell an object whose owner was the footballer. Aguttes gave in to the pressure and suspended the sale.

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