Maradona throws punch in scuffle with reporters

Diego Maradona threw a wild punch and some insults at a crush of local television reporters on Wednesday, who crowded him as he left a courthouse following an arbitration hearing with his former manager.

Maradona and Guillermo Coppola, who have been enmeshed in a legal dispute over past business dealings, were summoned to appear at a hearing. But chaos ensued when Maradona left and local photographers and journalists chased him.

Live television showed Maradona and his ex-wife, Claudia Villafane, as they tried to escape through a crowd of local journalists. Maradona was heard to shout: ”Don’t push Claudia.”

With camera crews and reporters surrounding him, Maradona was seen throwing a punch that apparently missed. There were no reports of injuries, but Maradona can be heard on video complaining: ”They hit me with a camera!”

Maradona is a beloved soccer hero in Argentina, subject to frequent local coverage. He was chosen by world football governing body Fifa, along with Brazil’s Pele, as the two greatest players in the history of the game. He catapulted to fame as captain of the Argentine team that won the 1986 World Cup in Mexico. — Sapa-AP

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