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Maradona rounds on his critics in Argentina

Argentina manager Diego Maradona attacked his critics in the aftermath of his team's 1-0 win over neighbours Uruguay in Montevideo on Wednesday securing their place in next year's World Cup in South Africa.

Midfielder Mario Bolatti grabbed the all important winner on the night just six minutes from the end to momentarily relieve the pressure on the under fire Maradona. The former Argentina captain has overseen a difficult qualifying campaign in which he has used over 70 players.

Following Argentina's result in Montevideo, which secured fourth place in the South American qualifying zone, Maradona was quick to praise his players before rounding on the press: 'I would like to thank the team for giving me the privilege to lead Argentina to the World Cup,' he said.

'Thank you to the Argentinian people who had faith. Thanks to the players who managed to stand firm and take this group forward,' the former Napoli star said. 'I have a good memory and now I am going to remember more than ever. This is for those who did not believe in the national team and treated me like dirt - they will now have to accept this. I want to thank the players and fans - no-one but them.'

Diego concluded his rant with a veiled attack on the Argentinian sports press: 'For those who didn't believe in this national team, for those who treated me like garbage [I say] today we are in the World Cup with all the honours, beating a team like Uruguay.'

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