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Maradona hired by struggling Argentine club Gimnasia

5:17 AM GMT+8 06/09/2019
Diego Maradona 2018
The Albiceleste legend has been hired by the last-placed side, having most recently coached Mexican second-division side Dorados

Argentina legend and former Albiceleste head coach Diego Maradona has been hired at Argentine club Gimnasia de La Plata.

Maradona returns to coaching on a one-year contract in his first job since departing Mexican second division club Dorados in June.

He takes over for Dario Ortiz, under who Gimnasia had endured a miserable start to the season.

The club had taken just one point in their first five games, and sit rock-bottom of the Argentine top-flight in 24th place.

It will represent a very difficult third coaching stint in the Argentine professional leagues, following his time at Deportivo Mandiyu and Racing Club in 1994 and 1995 respectively.

The Argentina legend has struggled to find his footing in coaching, with his tenure at most jobs rarely lasting beyond a season.

His longest spell as a head coach came in charge of Argentina, leading the national team from July 2008 through 2010, guiding them to the quarter-finals of the World Cup in South Africa.

Maradona was appointed head coach Al-Wasl in May 2011, but was sacked by the Dubai club in July 2012.

He then enjoyed a long spell as an assistant at Argentine club Deportivo Riestra from 2013-17, departing to take the job at Fujairah FC.

However, he left after just one season, but went on to enjoy a brief but fairly successful stint at Dorados.

Maradona twice guided the club to the second-division title game after taking over in September 2018.

However, Dorados fell both times at that last hurdle to Atletico San Luis, who earned promotion to Liga MX as a result of those victories.

Maradona entered talks with the club to continue his stay, but ended up departing in June 2019, citing health reasons as he was set to undergo surgeries on his knee and shoulder.

Indeed, his knee has believed to have ended the possibility of him taking over Gimnasia, but negotiations have proved fruitful, with Maradona taking over the Buenos Aires club.

Maradona’s first game in charge is set to be September 15, after the international break, when he will face Racing Club in front of his new supporters.