Soccer

Diego Maradona returns as coach of Argentina's Gimnasia two days after leaving

AFP-JIJI

Argentine legend Diego Maradona announced on Thursday he would return as coach of Argentine first-division side Gimnasia, just two days after resigning.

“I am very happy to be able to announce that I will remain coach of Gimnasia,” he wrote on social media, noting that his about-face comes after “we finally achieved political unity in the club.”

Maradona had explained he was no longer keen on remaining at the club after its president Gabriel Pellegrino, the man who brought him back to Argentine football, pulled out of running for reelection as the side’s president next Saturday.

However, thousands of supporters demonstrated in front of its headquarters demanding that he return to his post.

The 59-year-old former Argentina captain and coach took over at Gimnasia in early September, when it was bottom of the 24-club Superliga.

“I hope (club leadership) will provide reinforcements they promised me,” Maradona wrote.

The World Cup winner was hailed as a hero on his return to Argentine soccer after years coaching abroad but has had a limited impact in La Plata.

Gimnasia won three of its eight matches with him in charge, all of them away, while it lost five, including four at home.