DOHA: The shirt that Diego Maradona wore when he scored his infamous ‘Hand of God’ goal against England in 1986 will go on display in Qatar during the World Cup just five months after it set a record price at auction, a top official said Saturday.
The shirt, which sold for $9.3 million to a secret buyer, has been loaned to Qatar’s 3-2-1 sports museum and will go on display from Sunday until April 1.
Qatar has not named the shirt’s new owner, who paid a then record price for any sports memorabilia object, but negotiations are understood to have started just weeks after the May 4 auction.
Sheikha Al Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, head of Qatar Museums and a member of the Gulf state’s ruling family, said she was “excited” to have secured the shirt for a special World Cup exhibition.
“The jersey has been through quite a journey,” she added in a statement to AFP.
“Starting with the moment when Nottingham Forest midfielder Steve Hodge swapped jerseys with Maradona after the match, in what now seems an inspired move.”
Maradona scored both goals in the World Cup quarter-final 2-1 victory over England in Mexico City’s Aztec Stadium in 1986.
Pele’s right foot
The game has become one of the most talked about in football history and embellished the legendary status of Maradona, who died from a heart attack in November 2020 at the age of 60.
Wearing the number 10 shirt, Maradona punched the ball past England goalkeeper Peter Shilton for the first goal, saying later it had been “a little with the head of Maradona, a little with the hand of God.”
Soon after, Maradona sped past five English defenders and Shilton to slot home a strike that was voted “Goal of the Century” in a 2002 FIFA poll.
Hodge swapped shirts with Maradona and had loaned the shirt to a Manchester museum for 20 years before putting it up for sale where the anonymous buyer beat six other bidders including the Argentina Football Association. The final price was more than twice the value predicted by Sotheby’s.
But a jersey worn by basketball legend Michael Jordan was sold for $10.1 million on September 16, taking over as the record for the most expensive sports memorabilia and most expensive game-worn shirt.
The Maradona shirt will go on display at the “World of Football” exhibition with a ball used in the first World Cup finals in 1930, the first written account of the rules of football, one of only two bronze busts ever made of the iconic Brazilian Pele’s right foot and other jerseys worn by football greats.
“Many of the items displayed at the 3-2-1 Qatar Olympic and Sports Museum are like this: symbols of human passion that have long, moving narratives behind them,” said Sheikha Mayassa.
“These objects have now taken on a life of their own as part of the world’s culture – inspiring emotion, evoking memories, and sparking dialogue.”