Bar Nilo in Naples, Italy

In the summer of 1984, the SSC Napoli shockingly signed one of the greatest soccer players in the world during the time, the Argentine Diego Maradona, for a record-breaking sum. After finishing in the lower half in of the league the season before he joined, Maradona took Napoli to win the Italian league in 1987 and 1990, as well as the UEFA Cup in 1989. During that time, Maradona would become a legend on the Argentine national team as well, by winning the won them the World Cup in 1986. 

After the player’s sudden wave of success, the population of Naples was sept up in a transcendental wave of euphoria. In a short time, Diego Maradona became an icon of the city. After he left Napoli in 1991, the team would revert to mediocrity. Today, Naples is filled with countless pictures, stickers and murals of Maradona in the streets.

The star player has become an icon of the city and the secular equivalent of a venerated saint. To pay homage to Maradona, do as the locals do and head to Bar Nilo, a local watering hole that contains a shrine to the athlete. The bar’s altar is filled with photos of Maradona in the different stages during his career, from his early days in Argentina to his highest career achievements at Napoli.

What really pushes the shrine over the edge is that, much like real Catholic reliquary, the bar claims to feature a lock of Maradona’s hair. It rests in a place of honor at the heart of the shrine.

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