LEGENDARY Brazilian footballer Pele has paid an emotional tribute to the late Diego Maradona on social media.
And the 80-year-old has begged fans to stop compairng their talents and focus on ‘admiring each other more’.
Pele has called on football fans to not compare the twoCredit: AFP or licensors
World Cup winner Maradona, 60, an icon in Argentina, died of heart failure at his home in the capital after a period of ill health.
And now the leading goal scorer of all time has opened up on his friendship with Maradona.
Translated from Portuguese, he wrote on Instagram: “Seven days have passed since you left.
“Many people loved to compare us throughout their lives. You were a genius that charmed the world. A magician with the ball at his feet. A true legend.
“But above all that, for me, you will always be a great friend, with an even bigger heart.
“Today, I know the world would be much better if we could compare less to each other and start admiring each other more. So, I want to say that you are incomparable.
“Your career was marked by honesty. And in your unique and particular way, you taught us that we have to love and say “I love you” a lot more often.
Pele and Maradona are considered to be the greatest footballers of all timeCredit: AP:Associated Press
The two stars became great friends during their years of successCredit: Splash News
Maradona may well be best remembered for his ‘Hand of God’ goal against England – but his sills were supremeCredit: Bob Thomas Sports Photography – Getty
“Your quick departure didn’t let me say it to you, so I will just write: I love you, Diego.
“My great friend, thank you very much for our entire journey. One day, in heaven, we will play together on the same team.
“And it will be the first time that I raise my fist in the air in triumph on the pitch without celebrating a goal. It will be because I can finally embrace you again.”
Pele has been left devastated at the death of his friendCredit: EPA
Pele says he is looking forward to ‘playing on the same team’ in heavenCredit: Rex Features
The two football legends brought delight to millions around the worldCredit: The Mega Agency
Maradona played for Argentinos Juniors, Boca Juniors, Barcelona, Napoli, Sevilla and Newell’s Old Boys during his illustrious career.
He scored 34 goals in 91 appearances for Argentina before he retired from professional football in 1997.
After he hung up his boots, Maradona managed a long list of teams including Racing Club and his beloved Argentina.
Most recently he was in charge of Gimnasia de La Plata after he joined them in 2019.
Maradona and Pele are widely regarded as two of the greatest footballers of all time.