Maradona vows to fight demons

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Argentinean footballing legend Diego Maradona has vowed to fight his personal demons, following his latest health scare last month.

The 46-year-old was admitted to hospital with hepatitis symptoms in late March and suffered a relapse last month after initially discharging himself.

And in an interview screened on Argentina's Channel 13, Maradona admitted that his drinking was becoming problematic and he would endeavour to stop 'punishing' his body.

"I want to rest. I want to get in good physical shape," the 1986 World Cup winner said.

"I was ill, I recognise that. There were some very hard days, I do not recommend it to anybody. I made a mistake and paid a very high price.

"Today I am calm, doing the diet and taking care of myself. Now I want to rest in order to be better physically. I am not a drunk."

Maradona also vowed to find out the source of the rumours that he had died while in hospital, saying that he was "hurt" that people could suggest such things around his family.

"I'm sad because they didn't show any respect for my parents or my daughters. I don't know why they want to see me dead," he added.

"I'm alive and I want to keep living."

Maradona is treated as something approaching royalty in his native Argentina. He is regarded as the nation's finest-ever footballer and led his country to two consecutive World Cup finals – winning the 1986 tournament and finishing runners up to Germany in 1990.

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