Female footballer, Paula Dapena refused to stand during a minute’s silence in honour of late Diego Maradona before a women’s friendly match
The 60-year-old and greatest footballer of his generation suffered a cardiac arrest at a home in Tigre, Argentina, which led to his death on the 25th of November 2020.
Maradona had been recuperating from the removal of a blood clot on the brain before his death.
A minute’s remembrance was observed at football games around the globe this weekend, from amateur to the top professional leagues, in honour of the football legend.
Many of the world’s best players – including Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo – as well as almost every top club have paid tribute to Maradona over the past few days.
However Spanish player Paula Dapena wasn’t willing to honour Maradona when her team observed a minute’s silence over the weekend.
The Viajes Interrias FF midfielder sat down and faced away when her teammates and opponents, Deportivo Abanca, paid their respects to the Argentina star.
“As soon as I found out that there would be an act in his memory I refused to observe the minute’s silence for a rapist, paedophile and abuser,” Dapena said.
“I’m not willing to give a domestic abuser a minute’s silence and not the victims,” she said.
Maradona faced accusations of domestic violence after he was caught on video in 2014 arguing with his then girlfriend and appearing to hit her, he denied the claims and no charges were brought.
Dapena said she had received lots of expressions of support “but I’ve also received death threats – and so have some of my teammates”.
“We were giving a minute’s silence to someone who committed domestic violence,” she said.
“For me, that’s something that my feminist ideals can’t allow: a tribute to Maradona.
“For me he was an incredible player, but as a person he left a lot to be desired.”
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