(photo credit: AP)
Former Argentinean soccer player Diego Armando Maradona expressed his desire on Monday to visit Iran and meet President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
In a meeting with Iranian Charge d'Affaires to Buenos Aires Mohsen Baharavand, the former soccer player, whose infamous "Hand of God" goal knocked England out of the 1986 World Cup quarterfinal and whose life has been plagued with years of cocaine abuse, presented his autographed T-shirt to the Iranian nation.
"With all my love to Iranian people," Maradona signed the T-shirt.
Expressing his deep affection for the people of Iran, Maradona, who was thrown out of the 1994 World Cup finals in the US after failing a drugs test, said: "I am with the people of Iran by all my heart, I support them. I say it because I feel it, because I mean it."
The former player, who is an outspoken critic of US President George W. Bush, told Baharavand that he backs Ahmadinejad's government.
"I have already met (Cuban President) Fidel (Castro), and (Venezuelan President Hugo) Chavez, now I need to meet your president, Ahmadinejad," said Maradona.
Baharvand said that Maradona's autographed T-shirt would be sent to the Museum of Presents of Foreign Affairs Ministry and put on public display.
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