NEWS
27/06/2018 09:46 SAST | Updated 28/06/2018 14:42 SAST

Diego Maradona's Rollercoaster 90 Minutes

El Diego was just having a typical night out, according to some wags, as he watched Argentina beat Nigeria...

AFP/Getty Images

UPDATE: This article has been revised to correct earlier reports that Maradona had been hospitalised after the match.

Talk about one hell of a game, El Diego!

Diego Maradona, who wears his heart on his sleeve whenever his beloved Argentina compete in the Fifa World Cup, had one hell of a 90 minutes as his country sealed a dramatic 2-1 win over Nigeria on Tuesday.

He was the most, er... animated character whenever the cameras turned on him. His, ahem, high spirits were always apparent, from dancing with Nigerian fans before the game started, to posing as a Christ-like figure, to passing out, then swearing at a couple of fans after Argentina scored the winner later on... He has, however, since denied reports that he was hospitalised after the game — although he was apparently treated by EMS staff at the stadium.

In a heartbeat, Maradona became the Twitter meme king — all his best moments were captured and went viral as he showed what some euphemistically called his "overzealous passion" for the game and his country.

Here is a look at how his 90 minutes looked like.

Pre-game warmup

Before the game, Maradona got the party started by dancing with a random Nigerian fan, setting the tone of how his night was going to turn out.

Christ-like pose

Alexander Demianchuk/TASS

When the game started Maradona — who once scored the infamous "Hand of God" goal — posed as the son of God, imploring the heavens' favour as his team took the field.

Let the celebrations begin

AFP/Getty Images

Once Argentina scored the opening goal, courtesy of Lionel Messi, Pandora's box opened and El Diego went buck wild. He could not contain his excitement nor stop celebrating — which eventually led to him passing out for the remainder of the first half.

Robbie Williams impression

OLGA MALTSEVA via Getty Images

Eventually, Argentina were staring World Cup elimination in the face, tied at 1-1. Then Marco Rojo turned into a national hero, scoring the goal that sealed the victory they needed to get to the next round. As expected, El Diego went wild, this time showing zap signs to a section of fans sitting below him in the stands — a gesture World Cup watchers were already familiar with, thanks to Robbie Williams' tournament-opening performance last week.

Hospitalisation erroneously reported

All the, um... excitement eventually proved too much, and a tired and emotional Maradona was treated by medics after the game — but not, he now insists, taken to hospital.

Early on Wednesday morning, the irrepressible party animal posted an update on his Facebook page indicating that he was fine after the health scare rumours, and will be ready on Saturday to go again, when Argentina face France in the knockout stages.