Maradona leaves Gimnasia after just two months at the helm

goal.com, 19 November 2019, 18:59
The 59-year-old has departed the Argentine side after only managing to oversee three victories in his short spell in charge

Diego Maradona has left his role as coach of Gimnasia after just 72 days in charge.

The Argentine icon took over at the helm of the Superliga side in September this year on a deal that was supposed to run to the end of the season.

But Gimnasia have won just three games since the ex-Napoli, Barcelona and Boca Juniors hero's arrival and they sit third bottom of the Argentine top-flight after 13 matches.

Despite their 3-0 win over Aldosivi in their last game, the pressure was building on Maradona amid his side's terrible run of form, with club president Gabriel Pellegrino also coming under fire.

Reports suggested the coach could be on his way out, but he insisted he would remain in charge if Pellegrino stayed at the club.

Pellegrino, though, has decided not to run for re-election as Gimnasia president and he confirmed on Tuesday that the 59-year-old and his coaching team have left the club.

"I spoke with him yesterday and he told me that if there was unity, he would continue, but that failed," the president told reporters on Tuesday.

"We informed him and he did not want to continue. Maradona, [his assistant Sebastian] Mendez and his coaching staff were men of their word.

"We arrived together and we left together. He was more up to the task than us as leaders."

He explained the reasons behind Maradona's departure in more detail on Radio La Red: "Maradona stopped working today, he's no longer Gimnasia's head coach.

"Maradona worked in a collective scheme. He said he was here to add, not to rest. He'd love to continue, but he wants unity. It just didn't happen."

"Today's meeting failed. There will be elections on Saturday. [Diego] Maradona gave his will and he gave his time. He had an enormous will.

"There will be elections on Saturday and [the candidates] will look for a head coach."

Maradona has been linked with other clubs in his homeland, with Godoy Cruz and Argentinos Juniors said to be interested in hiring him.

But the legend himself has expressed interest in taking over his former side Newell's Old Boys, who his Gimnasia side beat earlier this season.

"I have a broken heart because I know I'm coming back here," he said after the 4-0 win. "My heart tells me that I will return because I want to train Newell's."

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