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Diego Maradona Hospitalized in Argentina in Non-Emergency Situation, Says Doctor

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistNovember 3, 2020

Former soccer great Diego Maradona holds up a small, generic replica of a FIFA World Cup soccer trophy as he kisses it in front of fans below at the Casa Rosada government house after his meeting with Argentine President Alberto Fernandez in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Thursday, Dec. 26, 2019. Decades ago, Maradona held up his team's real trophy at this spot on the balcony after winning the World Cup in Mexico in 1986.  (AP Photo/Marcos Brindicci)
Marcos Brindicci/Associated Press

Soccer legend Diego Maradona was hospitalized in La Plata, Argentina, for precautionary reasons.

"My idea is to have him at least three days to check on him and keep him under control," Dr. Leopoldo Luque said to ESPN F90 in Argentina. "Maradona is psychologically ill and that can affect your physical health."

Luque also clarified this is "not an emergency situation," explaining that Maradona "needed to stay hydrated, get some blood tests and studies."

A lawyer representing the 1986 World Cup winner said in October he had tested negative for COVID-19 after having had close contact with somebody who had the coronavirus. Rather than COVID-19-related fears, his recent hospitalization was more for his mental health.

"Diego is a person who is sometimes excellent and sometimes not so much," Luque said, per Reuters. "He could be 10,000 times better. And bringing him here helps him."

Maradona's past problems with drug addiction are widely known. Heart problems forced him into intensive care in 2000 and 2004.

Most recently, the 60-year-old experienced internal bleeding in his stomach that required a brief hospital stay in January 2019.

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Maradona currently manages Gimnasia de La Plata in Argentina's Primera Division. The club earned a 3-0 victory over Patronato last Friday. ESPN noted Maradona initially attended the game but departed shortly after it started.

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