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Argentina legend Diego Maradona has offered to return as national team coach for free after finding it will cost almost £17million to sack Jorge Sampaoli. Argentine FA bosses were hoping that their boss would resign following the 4-3 World Cup exit at the hands of France last Saturday after a campaign that was wrecked by dressing room unrest.


But Sampaoli insists he wants to continue and he will demand the remaining four years of his contract is paid in full if he is dismissed. That will cost the cash-strapped AFA £16.8million. And Maradona – the genius who captained his country to their second World Cup triumph in 1986 – said: “I wish God would give me strength to return as a player.


“Seeing my national team beaten by a team that is not even one of the best in the tournament was very hard. “It makes me feel bad to see everything we built with so much effort destroyed so easily. “I would go back to the national team – and I would do it for free. I would not ask for anything in return. “My heart hurts and my soul hurts. I ran so much for my shirt, with my flag on my shoulder, so losing like we did I cannot accept.”


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