Fifa ambassador and Argentina legend Diego Maradona has said he was ‘fine’ after being seen by a doctor during Argentina’s World Cup victory over Nigeria on Tuesday evening.
The 57-year-old was watching their must win Group D match from a Directors box at the Saint Petersburg Stadium, where he was observed to be animated and at one point appeared to be asleep.
Just after the final whistle, footage circulated on Twitter showing Maradona being carried back into his VIP box, before rumours suggested he had suffered a heart attack.
This forced Maradona to contact a journalist pal who he WhatsApp messaged the following rambling recording, which he sent as he reached Moscow on a private jet in the early hours of Wednesday morning.
‘Where we were they were only serving white wine.
‘Yes, we drank all the wine, but now I’m talking to you and I’m telling you the truth.
‘I swear on the lives of my mum, my grandson Benjamin and my son Dieguito Fernando’s life that nothing happened.
‘At the end of the first half we went to eat. I like red wine and there was white wine.’
Maradona also WhatsApp voice messaged his partner Rocio Olivia: ‘Hello my love. No heart attack, no injection, nothing.
‘I don’t know where they’re getting it from that I had heart problems or I had to be an adrenaline shot. It all seems so mad, so stupid.’
Several hours later he took to social media with an account of the events that contradicted his previous messages.
‘I want to tell everyone that I am fine, that I am not, neither was I interned.
‘In the halftime of the game against Nigeria, my neck hurt a lot… I was checked by a doctor and he recommended me to go home before the second half, but I wanted to stay because we were risking it all. How could I leave? I send a kiss to everyone, thanks for the support!’