'Hand of God' still irks Butcher

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Terry Butcher has revealed he is still fuming over Diego Maradona's 'Hand of God' goal against England as the duo prepare to be reunited this week.

Scotland assistant boss Butcher was part of the side beaten 2-1 by a Maradona-inspired Argentina in the 1986 World Cup quarter-finals in Mexico.

Speaking ahead of Wednesday's Hampden Park clash between Scotland and Argentina, the former England captain recalled the moment he almost lost it 22 years ago, and told The Times: "Maradona was in the doping room after the game, giving it all the high fives and the shouts and the screams and all that with his pals. And we sat there debating whether to fill him in."

He added: "It still rankles with me that he has never really admitted to what he did, he's never really put both hands up - the hands of God - and said, 'Yes, it was the wrong thing to do'.

"An English player would have said that, as far as I am concerned. It tarnishes the image to me.

"I have always said, and will say, that he was the greatest footballer I have ever come across, but I would just like him to have said it straightforwardly, that it was wrong."

Steve Hodge swapped shirts with Maradona at the end of the game and it now hangs in England's National Football Museum in Preston.

Hodge believes it could fetch more than the £157,750 paid at auction for the shirt worn by Pele in the 1970 World Cup final.

Butcher said: "That shirt is the last thing I wanted. I would not even clean my car with it, that is how strongly I feel about it."

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2008, All Rights Reserved.

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Terry Butcher
Preston North End

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