Napoli paid tribute to a club legend on Sunday by wearing a special kit designed in honour of the late Argentina great Diego Maradona.
Maradona, who died in November 2020, was Napoli's star player during their most glorious era. During his seven years in Naples, between 1984 and 1991, he helped the club win their only two Serie A titles, the UEFA Cup and the Coppa Italia. He also inspired his country to victory in the 1986 World Cup final while he was a Napoli player.
Following his death last year, Napoli renamed their stadium the Stadio Diego Armando Maradona, and they made another tribute to mark what would have been the iconic No. 10's 61st birthday (on Oct. 30) by donning a shirt bearing his image made by their kit manufacturers Emporio Armani.
"One year after his death, Napoli honours the great champion, symbol of an era and undisputed icon of world football," the club said in a statement.
The limited edition Maradona Game shirt is available to purchase now!— Official SSC Napoli (@en_sscnapoli) November 7, 2021
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The Maradona "fingerprint" design on the shirt was created by artist Giuseppe Klain and is intended to represent the everlasting imprint he has made on Neapolitan culture and the world of football as a whole.
The Italian side took to the pitch against Hellas Verona wearing the kit, which they intend to wear for all three of their league matches this month -- both home and away.
After falling behind to an early goal from Verona striker Giovanni Simeone, Napoli summoned the spirit of Maradona to claw their way back level just five minutes later, when Giovanni Di Lorenzo's equaliser ensured a share of the points as the game finished 1-1. The point was enough to keep Napoli top of the Serie A table going into the international break, but only on goal difference above AC Milan in second.
Napoli will continue to wear their Maradona shirts throughout the rest of November as Luciano Spaletti's side prepare to face Inter Milan and Lazio on Nov. 21 and Nov. 28 respectively.
According to Napoli, a portion of the proceeds from all sales of the replica jerseys will be donated to charitable causes.
The "Maradona Game" jersey is not the first limited-edition piece of kit that Napoili have played in this season, having celebrated Halloween last month by wearing a black shirt covered in a spiderweb design in matches against Torino and Bologna.
Their habit of releasing eye-catching kits goes back a few years, having previously shown a penchant for camouflage with a range of military-inspired shirts as well as a double-denim look uniform.