Matches at Hampden Park
Scotland 1 Argentina 3, 1979
It is rare for an international friendly match to live long in the memory, especially decades after it was played.
A summers night at Hampden in 1979 is the exception to the rule, where all 62,000 fans in attendance would have the honour of saying they watched Diego Armando Maradona score his first goal for his country.
Maradona arrived in Glasgow as an 18-year-old, desperate to show his manager had made a grave error leaving him out of the victorious World Cup squad 12 months earlier.
On the pitch, Maradona dazzled, impressing the Hampden crowd and his opponents in dark blue with his control, speed and bravery. He was involved in Argentina’s first two goals, providing the assists. In the 70th minute, Maradona took his moment. Slipped into the box in the right channel, he sold keeper Alan Rough a dummy before finishing low into the corner.
While Arthur Graham would pull one back for Jock Stein’s side late on, this match was all about the diminutive Argentinian wearing ten.
Maradona would go on to cement himself as one of the most loved players of all time, winning trophies all over the world and lifting the FIFA World Cup in 1986.
Maradona’s relationship with Hampden wouldn’t end there. On his appointment as Argentina manager in October 2008, fate dictated that his first match in charge would see him return to Hampden to take on Scotland. Maxi Rodriguez would be the difference that night, scoring the only goal in a 1-0 win over George Burley’s side.