Diego Maradona dies: Juventus and Benevento halt game to pay tribute to Napoli great

By Sports Desk November 28, 2020

Play was stopped in the 10th minute of the Serie A clash between Benevento and Juventus as players and coaching staff from both teams paid tribute to Diego Maradona. 

Argentina great Maradona, who lit up the Italian top flight during seven seasons with Napoli, died of natural causes at the age of 60 on Wednesday. 

Tributes have been paid across the sporting world this week, with a minute's silence being held ahead of each Serie A game, during which players will wear black armbands. 

An image of Maradona is also being shown on stadium screens in the 10th minute of each fixture, marking the shirt number he wore, along with a "Ciao Diego" message.

Benevento and Juve players, including Argentina international Paulo Dybala, went a step further with their tributes as play came to a standstill on Saturday for those present to applaud arguably the greatest ever footballer. 

Maradona led Napoli to league titles in 1987 and 1990 and the club plan to rename their San Paolo home in his honour.

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    - Eric Garcia looks set to finish the season with Manchester City. Marca reports Barcelona cannot afford a transfer fee for the defender and the delay of the LaLiga club's presidential elections, now scheduled for March 7, mean Garcia will have to wait for a move.

    - Also at Barcelona and backup goalkeeper Neto has asked for a January move, according to Sport. It comes as he struggles for game time behind Marc-Andre ter Stegen and amid links to Arsenal.

    - Eder Militao is facing an uncertain future at Real Madrid. Goal reports Bayern Munich have joined the list of clubs who have asked about the defender, with Juventus, Tottenham and Borussia Dortmund also reportedly interested in Militao, who has played just three times this season.

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  • Ronaldo is one of the best in football history... I will tell my children I played with him - Morata Ronaldo is one of the best in football history... I will tell my children I played with him - Morata

    Alvaro Morata rates the "incredible" Cristiano Ronaldo as one of the best players of all time and intends to tell his children he played alongside the Juventus forward.

    Five-time Ballon d'Or winner Ronaldo has scored 19 goals in 18 games in his third season with Serie A champions Juve.

    Morata returned to the Allianz Stadium from Atletico Madrid on an initial loan deal last September and has chipped in with four goals and five assists in 12 league outings.

    The pair also spent time together at Real Madrid and Morata says it is a pleasure linking up with the Portugal captain once again.

    "It's easy to play with him," he told Sky Sport Italia. "I've known him for some time. On some occasions when a normal person wouldn't score, he scores. 

    "In Parma I gave him an assist that only he could see and understand. I understand his movements and what he likes to do. 

    "I often take his men away by moving, and I think it helps him not to always have two or three players around him. It's a pleasure to play with him.

    "He is still one of the best in football history. He's great, has incredible quality and he can play wherever he wants, whether it is as a number nine, 10 or 11. 

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    Juventus travel to second-placed Inter on Sunday aiming to bridge a four-point gap to their opponents, whom they have a game in hand over.

    As well as pitting together two Italian giants, it will also be a clash between Serie A's two highest scorers this season - Ronaldo (15) and Romelu Lukaku (12).

    The 27 goals the pair have netted between them is more than 12 Serie A clubs have netted in total this season.

    Morata is looking forward to coming up against another of his former colleagues in Lukaku and hopes to swap shirts with the prolific striker after the match at San Siro.

    "Romelu is one of the best strikers in the world, he is complete," the Spaniard said. "He is also a great person, someone I like to see play. 

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    "Lautaro [Martinez] is a more versatile player, but Lukaku does things where you can't stop him."

    Sunday's Derby d'Italia clash will be the 175th in Serie A history, with Juve's 84 victories in this fixture the most for a team against a single opponent in the Italian top flight.

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