Diego Maradona Family: Soccer Legend’s Ex-Wife Claudia Villafane, Many Children In Spotlight After His Death

Diego Maradona coaches during a soccer match.
MARCOS BRINDICCI / Getty Images

Diego Maradona’s family is in the spotlight after the soccer legend passed away at the age of 60.

The Argentinian forward, whose career spanned two decades, died early this week. According to Goal.com, he had been hospitalized since the start of November suffering from fatigue, with tests showing a blood clot on his brain. He underwent successful surgery but reportedly died of heart failure this week.


Maradona Known For ‘Extravagant’ Lifestyle, High-Profile Relationships

Diego Maradona poses with his family.
  Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images

While he made a name for himself on the field as one of the world’s best players, Maradona also earned some fame for his life off the pitch. As The Sun noted, he sparked a relationship with Claudia Villafane when she was just 17, and the pair married in 1989. Though they would eventually split after more than 15 years of marriage, the couple remained close following their divorce, the report noted.

“The pair divorced in 2004 but were seen out and about in the years that followed, including at the 2006 World Cup,” the report noted, adding that Villafane went on to become a successful television personality. “Earlier this year, Claudia took part on Celebrity Masterchef Argentina.”

While Maradona would never remarry, he did enter another long-term relationship with Rocio Oliva, herself a former professional soccer player for a number of clubs in Argentina. The pairing caused a stir at the time, as Maradona was three decades older than his new girlfriend.

The pair got engaged in 2014 but would go on to split in 2018 after a highly publicized rift. As The Sun reported, Oliva kicked him out of the home he had bought for her in an exclusive area of the Argentine capital of Buenos Aires. After a series of fights, she reportedly made a television appearance where she described herself as single, leading to another argument that lasted an entire weekend.

As a source told the newspaper at the time, Oliva did not want to move to Mexico, where he was the manager of a club team.

“She doesn’t want to go to Mexico under any circumstances. She wants to stay in Argentina,” the source said.


Maradona Was Father To At Least Eight Children

Diego Maradona poses on the soccer field.
  Marcos Brindicci / Getty Images

As The Sun reported, there is not as much known about his family beyond his high-profile relationships. The outlet wrote that he had “at least five children,” including son Diego Sinagra, who plays for a club soccer team in Italy, but there were likely even more.

The Argentine legend did not originally acknowledge paternity of Sinagra, who was born after an alleged affair with a woman in Italy. Maradona finally met and grew close to his son in the last two years, speaking highly of him to media in his home country.

“I love him a lot and he’s very like me,” he said.

Maradona had two daughters with Villafane, along with another son and daughter. And there are potentially three more children, the report added.

“According to the BBC, in 2019 Maradona’s lawyer said he would accept paternity of three Cuban children – making him a father of eight,” the outlet reported.