"I am the number one fan of the Palestinian people. I respect them and sympathize with them," soccer legend Diego Maradona told reporters in Dubai, where he coaches the al-Wasl football team.
Maradona said Saturday that he "promised the Palestinian football team to visit Palestine," adding "I support this nation’s cause, since I grew up on struggle and standing against injustice."
This was not the first time that Maradona, who led Argentina to a World Cup title in 1986, voiced his support for the Palestinians. In August the superstar accepted the Palestinian black-and-white scarf from a fan.
He hugged the fan and thanked him, before flashing a victory sign and telling the camera "Viva Palestina."
Maradona was sacked as the manager of the Argentinean national team after its poor showing in the last World Cup in South Africa.
"I don't watch Argentina's games," he said. "I just can't. It's stronger than me. I haven’t watched one game since being fired, because it pains my heart."