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Trending: Ederson to cost more than Buffon


Keita relishing Leipzig UCL challenge


Maradona on the money

Off The Ball never rests in its mission to scratch around the underbelly of professional football to find the most bizarre, humorous and inexplicable stories.

This week, Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson dusts off his boots to play against Blackpool, Carlo Ancelotti claims Chelsea are solar powered, Diego Maradona biggest fans campaign to get his face on the 10 peso note, Francesco Totti declares himself immortal and Ronaldinho reveals his nutmeg tackle.

Fans trying to get El Diego on 10 peso note

Argentina legend Diego Maradona incites a fanaticism in his followers that can best be described as unhealthy. The 1986 World Cup winner already has a religion - the Iglesia Maradoniana, or the Maradonian Church - devoted to him and now there is a campaign to get his face on the country's 10 peso note.

'Diego' has already entered Argentinian slang as another word for 10 pesos and more than 15,000 people have joined a Facebook group entitled 'let the Diego be Diego', which is campaigning for their idol to replace the face of Manuel Belgrano on the note.

While Belgrano may have lead Argentina's fight for independence and created the country's flag, he didn't humiliate the English with the "Hand of God" and then score one of the best goals in World Cup history en-route to almost single-handedly winning the tournament for a football-mad country.

El Diego's campaigners have even created a mock-up of what the 10 peso note would look like, with an iconic image from the 1986 World Cup triumph. Maradona has yet to comment on the situation but it could be a real boost in his efforts to pay off the massive Italian tax bill that hangs over him.

Ancelotti: Chelsea are solar powered

Chelsea manager Carlo Ancelotti must have greeted news from the UK met office that it has been hottest April on record with a series of cartwheels this week after revealing his team's push towards the defence of their Premier League title has been driven by solar power.

Ancelotti, who will be hoping the sunny weather continues throughout May, said: "I don't want to joke, but when the sun comes out and the temperature is hotter, for us it's better. We suffer in the winter temperatures."

After watching his side beat Tottenham 2-1 at Stamford Bridge on Saturday, Ancelotti added: "It could be a good reason to explain this. Last year, this moment was very good for us. Good home form."

Solar-powered Chelsea are just three points behind league-leaders Manchester United who they play on Sunday at Old Trafford. Unfortunately for the Blues, Manchester is infamous for its rain.

Fergie dusting off his boots for Blackpool

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, who proved against Schalke on Wednesday night that he is king of surprise team selections, will go one better and play himself on the final day of the season if his side have wrapped up the Premier League title.

United face relegation-threatened Blackpool on the last day and Tangerines' manager Ian Holloway revealed Fergie made the tongue-in-cheek promise after he called the 69-year-old Scot to commend United's destruction of Champions League semi-final opponents Schalke.

"I rang to congratulate him on their performance. They were breathtaking," Holloway said. "We got chatting, and he asked who we had next. I mentioned Tottenham and Bolton, and said of course we finish up against you.

"I said I hoped they'd have the title wrapped up by then, and he said 'If we have, I'll play myself against you, my old son'. I'll hold him to that."

Totti: I'll never die

Roma golden boy Francesco Totti proclaimed himself immortal after scoring his 206th Serie A goal in the Giallorossi's 3-2 win over Bari to overhaul Roberto Baggio on the all-time goalscorers list this week.

Totti, who scored a penalty but missed a second spot-kick that we'll quickly gloss over, unveiled a special t-shirt to mark the occasion that also declared him the King of Rome.

"This is a very special record and it's very important for me, so I enjoyed myself designing a t-shirt to celebrate this unforgettable moment. It reads 'The King of Rome is not dead'." Totti told La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"These words were spoken by an English commentator during the derby last March, when I scored twice against Lazio. And I must say that I immediately liked it, because it's true, I never die."

Silvio Piola, who won the World Cup with Italy in 1938, tops the all-time Serie A scoring list with 274 goals, followed by Gunnar Nordahl (225), Giuseppe Meazza (216), Jose Altafini (216) and Totti.

Pachuca put entire squad on transfer list

Mexican side Pachuca reacted particularly badly to missing out on the Clausura championship quarter-finals this week and put their entire squad, which won the CONCACAF Champions League just last season, up for sale.

Pachucha, who were upset by African champions TP Mazembe of DR Congo in their Club World Cup quarter-final in Abu Dhabi in December, ended the Clausura on a four-match winless streak to finish last in their group.

"After a meeting, we decided to make all the first team players transferable," the Pachuca board said in a statement. "This doesn't mean they will go, but that they have to option of leaving the club if that suits their interests and those of the club."

The 'Gophers' squad includes Paraguay striker Edgar Benitez, Colombians Miguel Calero, Yulian Anchico and Franco Arizala and Americans Hercules Gomez and Jose Torres.

Video of the week

Brazilian forward Ronaldinho is well known for his attacking flair but did you know he can also pull off a nutmeg tackle? Or even know what a nutmeg tackle is? The former World Player of the Year revealed his new move against Vasco Da Gama at the weekend. Click here to watch Ronaldinho's nutmeg tackle .

More than words...

Borussia Dortmund striker Kevin Grosskreutz celebrates winning the Bundesliga title with a quick drink. ©Getty Images

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