Diego Maradona has expressed his disappointment over not being considered by the media as a candidate for the Argentina job.
The Argentina Football Association (AFA) chose Lionel Scaloni and Pablo Aimar as the coaches to guide the national team for next month’s friendlies against Guatemala and Colombia and is continuing to search for a full-time replacement with Jorge Sampaoli having been sacked shortly after the team’s last-16 elimination from the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
Tottenham’s Mauricio Pochettino, Atletico Madrid’s Diego Simeone, River Plate’s Marcelo Gallardo, Jose Pekerman, whose contract with Colombia expires this month, and Peru’s World Cup coach Ricardo Gareca have all been linked to the position in recent weeks.
Maradona, who last month said he would return to guide Argentina for free, wrote in an Instagram post on Tuesday: “Regarding the Argentina national team, I want to say that it really bothers me that some journalists do not include me among the possible coaches. For example, while I was having a [dental] operation, I listened to [Argentinian sports journalist Diego] Chavo Fucks and he did not even name me among the possible candidates. I remember his beginnings, when I was still playing, and it seems that now he now does not value me.
“And I lament that some Argentinian newspapers don’t take me into account but do speak of former national team coaches, yet not about me.
“But hey, this is the sports journalism that we Argentinians have.”
Maradona was at the World Cup in Russia and attracted negative headlines for his behaviour while watching Argentina from the stands.
Maradona coached Argentina from 2008 to 2010, which included leading the Albiceleste in the 2010 World Cup. Argentina topped their group and beat Mexico in the round of 16, but were knocked out in the quarterfinals, losing 4-0 to Germany.
His contract was not renewed after the tournament.
The 57-year-old is currently director at Belarus’ top division side Dinamo Brest but says he is always hopeful of returning to guide Argentina.
“Anyway, I have a three-year contract and Dinamo [Brest] have my word,” Maradona added. “Although for the national team I would give my life.”