x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Diego Maradona to continue at Wasl with or without reinforcements

Argentine legend focused on next season after threats of quitting over having a weak squad.

Diego Maradona admits threats about quitting were made out of frustration. Mike Young / The National
Diego Maradona admits threats about quitting were made out of frustration. Mike Young / The National

DUBAI // Diego Maradona last night reiterated his commitment to Al Wasl, promising to see out his two-year contract at the Dubai Pro League club even if the club's management fail to strengthen the squad.

Two weeks ago, the Argentine legend had threatened to quit after the end of his first season in-charge if the management did not deliver on their promise of bringing new players to the squad.

Maradona, however, changed his stance following a three-hour meeting with the club's board, headed by Marwan bin Bayat, on Wednesday night.

"In my meeting with the board last week, I was told that requirements of the team had already been made available," Maradona said last night following his team's 2-0 defeat to Al Wahda.

"That is why I really don't want to talk about this topic anymore. When I spoke to Mr Marwan, he made it clear that the reinforcements were made before I joined.

"Maybe this was not made clear to me, or maybe I did not understand [this] in the last seven months.

"That is why I don't want to talk about this topic anymore."

Maradona and the club management will meet again after the end of the season to plan their strategies for the next season.

The Wasl coach will make his suggestions to the management, but even if they are not accepted, he will continue working.

"I don't want to talk again about reinforcements, about the board or the management," Maradona said.

"If I had said anything about anyone from the board or management in the past, it was only out of frustration [because] we wanted to be able to win.

"In my next meeting with the board, we will discuss some changes among players for the next season. But at the end, I will remain at the head of my job with Al Wasl and I will coach the players they sign. I will respect my contract and I will respect the decisions when it comes to the players.

"I will fight next season with what I have and try to improve, even if Al Wasl do not reinforce the squad or bring any new players."

arizvi@thenational.ae

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