Diego Maradona‘s shirt from the 1986 World Cup, when he scored the controversial “Hand of God” goal against England, was sold for £7.1 million ($8.93 million), the highest amount ever spent at an auction for a piece of sporting artefact.
On June 22, 1986, four years after Argentina and the United Kingdom fought a war over the Falkland Islands, Maradona scored two goals in a quarter-final match in Mexico City. The ball had rebounded off Maradona’s fist, out of sight of the referee, and was declared a header by the referee.
Maradona later added that the goal was scored “a bit with the head of Maradona, and a little with the hand of God.”
Maradona dribbled the ball past practically the entire English team before beating goalie Peter Shilton for his second goal. In a FIFA poll in 2002, it was voted “goal of the century.” Argentina went on to win the FIFA World Cup by a score of 2-1.
Maradona, widely regarded as the greatest player of all time, battled cocaine addiction and other vices until passing away in November 2020 at the age of 60.
In an online auction, auctioneer Sotheby sold the jersey. The buyer of the jersey wasn’t revealed.
The previous record for sports memorabilia was $8.8 million, which was paid for the manifesto that founded the modern Olympic movement at a December 2019 auction. A Babe Ruth New York Yankees jersey sold for $5.64 million in 2019, setting a new record for a piece of apparel.