Jurgen Klopp has described an encounter with Diego Maradona as ‘like meeting the Pope’ as football continues to pay tribute to the late Argentine icon.
The football world was this week saddened by the sudden passing of Maradona on Wednesday, a player regarded by many amongst the greatest footballers to have ever lived.
Maradona was the inspiration behind Argentina’s 1986 World Cup success and captivated audiences across spells at clubs such as Boca Juniors, Barcelona and Napoli, leading the latter to the only two league titles in their history during the late eighties and early nineties.
Maradona was a football genius.
Diego was a man with a heart of gold. pic.twitter.com/MsB49lOLAJ
— Goal (@goal) November 27, 2020
Klopp has now joined a growing list of names to pay tribute to one of football’s finest, describing Maradona as the greatest player of his generation and fondly recalling his own meeting with the South American superstar.
“The best through my lifetime,” he said at a press conference ahead of Liverpool’s game with Brighton. “Maybe it is not right anymore because I have seen Cristiano [Ronaldo] and Lionel [Messi] many times now as well. In my own playing career, he was the stand out player.
“His life I think shows how nice and how difficult life can be when you are a world class footballer.
“I met him once. For a player of my level meeting him was like meeting the Pope.”