Maradona felt bad in the morning at his home, where he was recovering from previous brain surgery. Doctors failed to save his life.
The Argentine newspaper Olé reports that the cause of death was a heart attack.
Maradona, who was well known for having a wild lifestyle during and after his playing days, had a gastric bypass operation to lose weight in 2005 and was once more hospitalized two years later for alcohol-induced hepatitis.
He also fell ill at the last World Cup in Russia.
Maradona won the World Cup with Argentina in 1986, having knocked England out of the tournament in a match that saw him score the famous 'Hand of God' goal.