The jersey worn by Argentine football star Diego Maradona when he scored his famous goal during the 1986 World Cup was just sold for a record $ 9.3 million dollars…
Sotheby's announced that the sale of Maradona's jersey now holds the auction record for any piece of sports memorabilia. The previous record holder, the baseball jersey worn by Babe Ruth when he played for the New York Yankees, sold for $ 5.6 million in 2019.
"People understand that these items can be valued as a work of art," said Brahm Wachter, head of modern collectibles at Sotheby's.
During that quarterfinal match of the World Cup, between Argentina and England, the then 25-year-old Maradona scored the two most notable goals in football. The first, in which he infamously scored a goal with his hand, the player described as being made "a little with Maradona's head, and a little with God's hand", hence the nickname of the jersey. The second was called " World Cup Goal of the Century", according to a FIFA vote.
After the match, in which Argentina won 2-1, the players traditionally exchanged jerseys, and Maradona’s ended up in the hands of Steve Hodge.
Steve kept it until now when he decided to sell it and hired the most famous auction house Sotheby's for that job. A spokesman for auction house Sotheby's confirmed that the jersey had not been washed since the match.
"It was an absolute privilege to play against one of the greatest and most magnificent football players of all time," Hodge said in a statement. "The Hand of God jersey has a deep cultural significance for the world of football, the people of Argentina and the people of England, and I am sure that the new owner will be very proud to have the most legendary football jersey in the world."