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Everything We Know About Luis Diaz’s Now Insta-Famous Dad

Everything We Know About Luis Diaz’s Now Insta-Famous Dad

Luis Diaz is a feisty warrior that Liverpool fans just can’t get enough of and it seems like his fiery nature actually comes from his popular dad, Luis Manuel Diaz.

Better known as ‘Mane Diaz’, the 58-year-old has himself gone through a real rollercoaster of a past year that has been through highs and lows.

Mane and his wife Cilenis Marulanda opted to stay outside of the spotlight even after seeing their son secure a dream move to Anfield in 2021.

Luis Mane stayed in his home town of Barrancas, La Guajira in North Colombia to open and operate a soccer school for children of workers at the Cerrejon mine – being the second most popular person in the town after his son.

However, the lives of the Diaz family – especially that of Mane – changed drastically on October 28, 2023 – when they were both kidnapped by the Colombian terrorist group Ejercito de Liberacion National (ELN) at a gas station.

Kidnapping Victim

The experience was harrowing, as detailed by Mane’s best friend Victor Medina: “It was 5.30 pm local time on Saturday. They had filled up with petrol and then went to a neighbourhood nearby to collect something from a relative of Celinis. There the captors arrived, four men on motorbikes. They threatened them with weapons, made them get into the same vehicle and sped off with the other two on a motorbike tailing them. They headed for a rural area. The authorities were informed and there was a chase.”

Suddenly, chaos ensured and the entire footballing world started pleading for the kidnappers to release them. Marulanda was actually released earlier but the kidnappers kept a hold of Mane as the Colombian army started nationwide search operation. Luis Diaz, playing for Liverpool in England, was distraught but maintained professionalism to keep playing for the Reds – who gave him utmost support.

After 12 tormenting days, in which he was moved around to the Colombian-Venezuelan border, the terrorist group gave up Mane Diaz and set him free. Luis’ father recalls his harrowing experience in that period, saying after his return: “It was a lot of horseback riding, really hard, a lot of mountains, a lot of rain, too many insects. I couldn’t sleep peacefully, it was very difficult, almost 12 days without sleep.”

Social Media Star

After the kidnapping ordeal, the Diaz family thought it would not be safe or wise for Manuel and his close ones to stay in their home town anymore. Liverpool, to their credit, showed class in bringing the entire Diaz family – including his dad and mom to England to stay closer to his son in time for Christmas 2023.

That meant Diaz Sr could celebrate his 55th birthday with his famous son, something that he cherished and wrote on his Instagram: “I want to thank God for allowing me to celebrate another year of life. My family, my wife, my children, my daughter-in-law for making me spend this beautiful day [like this]. God bless you, I always love you with all my heart.”

Even Jurgen Klopp was pleased to see Luis Diaz reunited with his father in England, as he stated: “I’m happy for the whole family that they are together and everything is fine. The club helped them a lot, it was really cool. With all the bad things in that situation, there was nothing good about it, just how that whole group reacted was really good. Now they are here, so that’s cool. It’s a good combination for Christmas obviously, for the family.”

Mane Diaz has now become a bit of a social media sensation and a beloved figure among the Liverpool fanbase. A reason behind that is because he is really easy-going, friendly and a little bit of crazy – in the right way.

He can be seen attending matches regularly, loving to interact with the supporters – be it sharing drinks with them on the tube, clicking pictures or chatting with them.

He is also a bit of a hilarious character who has over 16,000 Instagram followers because of the quirky and often random content he tends to upload. Diaz Sr is also a staunch supporter of his son during Liverpool games and cameras often manage to catch his passionate celebrations in the stands.

Luis Diaz’s wife Gera Ponce recently uploaded a TikTok clip where he’s dancing to a song that is basically about a kidnapping and the lyrics are as: “they kidnapped you, they tied you up, they blindfolded you’. It’s clear that Papa Diaz has clearly gotten over his kidnapping to the point that he can make jokes about the entire ordeal now.

Despite going through a nightmare in October that could have caused lifelong trauma for any person, Luis Manuel Diaz has come out of it stronger, much happier and more grateful for the life he has – which is probably why he’s enjoying every bit of it in England.