Diego Maradona’s warm-up was the original viral video long before the Ronaldo, Messi era of amazing tricks

Maradona’s now-iconic warm-up 31 years ago last Sunday was one of those defining moments in soccer for what it revealed about the player and about us.

It was a viral video before there were viral videos. A TikTok before Tiktok.

I’m referring to the video of Diego Maradona’s warm-up routine ahead of Napoli’s UEFA Cup semifinal second leg against Bayern Munich in 1989, which happened 31 years ago on Sunday.

In an era of slick viral videos, athletes doing keepy-ups on camera or influencers recreating classic soccer moments in their gardens, Maradona’s old footage still reigns supreme.

It’s probably the most-watched bit of organic on-pitch football footage that doesn’t include a second of game action. It’s both of its time and ahead of its time. It’s a Pieter Bruegel painting in the sense that there is tons going on, except it all revolves around one figure: Maradona.

Forget your feelings about the man. Forget what you know and what you’ve seen, like Asif Kapadia’s excellent documentary. Come at this footage fresh and ask yourself: what is going on? What am I watching?