$12.5 million for Maradona’s ‘Hand of God’ T-shirt

The shirt worn by Diego Maradona when he scored two of the most famous goals in football history sold for £7.14m (Aus$12.5m), a new auction record for a sports memorabilia .

Maradona, who died in November 2020 aged 60, wore the number 10 shirt for Argentina in the 1986 World Cup quarter-final against England in Mexico.

Six minutes into the second period, a man considered by many to be the greatest player of all time put his team ahead by driving the ball into the net for what he later claimed came through the ‘hand of God’ .

Four minutes later, Maradona dribbled from his own half to score a goal widely regarded as the best in World Cup history.

England midfielder Steve Hodge received Maradona’s shirt after the match and announced last month that he was going to auction it after 19 years on display at England’s National Football Museum.

“This historic jersey is a tangible reminder of an important moment not only in sports history, but also in the history of the 20th century,” said Brahm Wachter, director of modern streetwear and collectibles at Sotheby’s.

Sotheby’s said the buyer was anonymous.

Wednesday’s sale broke the previous record for sports memorabilia set by the original autograph manuscript of the 1892 Olympic Manifesto, which sold for $8.8 million ($12.4 million Australian) in 2019.

The sale of Maradona’s jersey was complicated by claims that the wrong jersey was under the hammer, with his daughter and ex-wife saying that Hodge received the jersey that Maradona wore in the first half of the match.

Sotheby’s said they used photo-comparison technology to “conclusively” match the jersey to both targets by “examining unique details in various elements of the item, including the patch, stripes and numbering.”

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