3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Not a balanced view...,
This review is from: The Hand of God: The Life of Diego Maradona (Paperback)
I was expecting this book to present a fair and open portrayal of Maradona as a player and a human being...but I was disappointed. We all know Maradona's failing as a human being but at the same time we also have to put it into context with the background which he came from, because in doing so, we would find a lot of answer as to why he did some of the things he did. Even thought this was noted in the book, I dont think Burn's reallt appreciated the extent to which how much his background effected him. I am a fan of Burns' writing, especially Barca, but I feel let down by this book as to me it comes across more about Burns then Maradona.
I am not for one minute saying that Maradona was an angel but I think some of the charges levelled against the player are simply unfair. There are parts in the book where Burn's criticises Maradona for visiting Cuba or blaming him for leaving Argentina. I mean in some places the author is really scraping the bottom of the barrel. An instance that comes to mind is the criticism of Maradona for accepting an apartment from Boca at the age of 20 something which was in the vicinity of a Navy training school which was controlled by the junta for making people disappear. Whist I wholeheartedly condemn the junta and their actions, I don't think we can say that Maradona was supporting the junta or was part of it just for accepting an apartment (which according to his autobiography was part of his transfer to Boca). We have to bear in mind Maradona at the time was a 20 something, uneducated footballer. Can we really blame him for being a pawn in the junta's scheme? Far more intelligent and wealthy people have been manipulated by junta's all over the world, so why blame Maradona?
Like some reviews above mine have said, the book focuses to much on the negative aspect of Maradona and doesn't balance it out the positives he brought the world of football. Not even Pele or Cruyff managed to win a world cup single-handedly or transform an average team like Napoli into league champions. True Maradona was no angel, he took drugs, he misbehaved.....but to accuse him of supporting the junta or not standing up to the junta at the age of 20 something is not really fair.