Mexican soccer awaits Maradona’s coaching debut with Sinaloa

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Culiacan (Mexico), Sep 17 (IANS) Argentine legend Diego Armando Maradona will make his debut this week as coach of the Sinaloa Dorados in Mexico’s second-tier Ascenso football league at the start of a project to save the “Big Fish,” as the team is known.

On Monday, the local stadium will be filled at an unusual time when Maradona coaches the team for the first time in Culiacan against the Tapachula Cafetaleros, who are ranked last, reports Efe news.

After eight outings, the Dorados have racked up three ties and three losses, scoring just two goals versus having seven scored against them, putting the team in the second-to-last spot in the rankings.

In a marketing coup, the Sinaloa team’s leadership hired Maradona to try and turn the team’s fortunes around and, for the moment, the Dorados have garnered more interest in the media than many Mexican first division – or even European – squads.

But pairing sports results with the marketing success will be the challenge facing Maradona, a soccer genius considered to be among the three greatest players in history but who has not shown the same ability as a coach.

Maradona took Argentina to the South Africa World Cup finals in 2010, but the team was smashed there 4-0 by Germany. Besides that, he has coached a couple of squads in the Arab Emirates and in his homeland – Mandiyu and Racing de Avellaneda – achieving only mediocre results.

–IANS

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