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On Frame: A conversation with the director of ‘Diego Maradona’

Glenn Crooks interviews the director of the new HBO documentary.

Diego Maradona is an iconic, enigmatic and tragic figure, all of which is captured in the new documentary “Diego Maradona.”

Academy Award-winning director Asif Kapadia tells Pro Soccer USA’s Glenn Crooks that he discovered 500 hours of archived footage that provides the essence of the man best known for his slalom through England in the quarterfinals of the 1986 World Cup and the “hand of God” goal in the same match.

“I can tell you that having done so much research on Diego Maradona, I’ve seen him do it three or four times,” Kapadia says. “Half the time he gets away with it, half the time he gets caught.”

Kapadia’s film, which arrives Tuesday on HBO, spends considerable time on the incredible seven years Maradona played for Napoli.

“The most expensive player in the world goes to one of the poorest cities in Europe and takes a team that’s never won anything before, was about to be relegated and within three years wins a championship,” Kapadia says. “That is the less well-known part of his story.”

“He’s a hero, he’s a god — they love him because they’ve never won anything since. He is treated like a god. He is a myth, he is a legend. There are lots and lots of generations of kids called Diego in Italy and in Naples.”

Also in this episode of On Frame are interviews with New York City FC head coach Dome Torrent, goalkeeper Sean Johnson and defender Sebastian Ibeagha after City clinched its first regular-season Eastern Conference championship.

NYCFC lost its match at the New England Revolution Sunday but received a little help from its friends in Columbus. The Crew defeated the Philadelphia Union 2-0, eliminating Philadelphia from contention. NYCFC and the Union meet this Sunday on the final day of Major League Soccer’s regular season.

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