Maradona was criticized because he was away in Dubai when Veronica Ojeda gave birth on Wednesday in the Argentine capital Buenos Aires.
He acknowledged Friday in a statement that he is the father of the baby being referred to in Argentina as "Dieguito" — Little Diego.
The child is the fifth known to be fathered by the 52-year-old Maradona. He has two daughters from his marriage with Claudia Vallafane — Dalma and Giannina. The Argentine football great has two other children he has never recognized as his, although courts in paternity cases have ruled he's the father.