00:04 GMT28 November 2020
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    Argentine football icon Diego Maradona had been in hospital undergoing emergency surgery due to a blood clot on his brain, with medics initially downplaying the operation as "routine".

    As Diego Maradona was seen leaving hospital in an ambulance on Wednesday, just eight days after being admitted for emergency brain surgery, his lawyer has claimed that it is a “miracle” the Argentine footballer is alive, according to Ole.

    ​The former footballer and current Gimnasia y Esgrima coach was pictured being driven away from the private Olivos Clinic just before 6pm local time on 11 November.

    ​Maradona was admitted to hospital for emergency surgery due to a detected blood on his brain, with his medics initially seeming to downplay the dangers of the subdural haematoma.

    The latter had shown up on a CT scan after the 1986 FIFA World Cup champion was admitted to a private clinic on 2 November for tests, with medics saying his health condition was not related to the COVID-19 coronavirus, and the subsequent operation labelled as "routine".

    Maradona had been in self-isolation recently after one of his bodyguards contracted COVID-19.

    Matias Morla, who visited the 60-year-old former Napoli and Barcelona star, insists the health scare was much more serious.

    “Diego experienced perhaps the most difficult moment of his life. I think the fact the brain bleed was discovered when it was is a miracle because it could have cost him his life,” Morla told reporters when leaving the private Olivos Clinic on the outskirts of Buenos Aires.

    ​The lawyer confirmed that Maradona was scheduled to leave the clinic to continue treatment for other conditions, such as his purported alcohol dependency, adding:

    “Diego’s in good shape and keen to rehabilitate himself with regards to other problems he has. He’s due to leave hospital today but we don’t know exactly when.”

    Maradona, who has suffered health issues throughout his life due in part to drug and alcohol abuse, is considered one of the greatest football players of all time.

    Heart and respiratory issues landed him in hospital back in 2004, while in January 2019, the current coach of the professional Argentine sports club based in the city of La Plata was admitted to hospital due to internal stomach bleeding.

    After his latest hospitalisation, Maradona is expected to stay in a house near his older daughters, close to the Argentinian capital Buenos Aires.

    The property is believed to be not far from the home of Gianinna Maradona, one of his two daughters with ex-wife Claudia Villafane.

    Gianinna Maradona made an emotional Instagram post on 7 November, accompanying it with a photo of her Father reaching out towards her as a toddler.

    She urged the former footballer-turned-manager to “stay strong”. Local reports state that Maradona will be under 24/7medical surveillance.


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