Lionel Messi Responds to Ronaldinho’s Retirement by Posting an Instagram Message of Gratitude

?Before Lionel Messi’s meteorical rise at the Nou Camp, Ronaldinho was the superstar that got supporter’s off their seats with his sublime skills and wonderful goals. The talented Brazilian was seen as the catalyst for ?Barcelona’s revival in world club football, but it has now been confirmed that he made the decision to officially retire from the professional game. 

Reported by Give Me Sport, Ronaldinho entertained and inspired many football enthusiasts, the attacking midfielder has finally called time on one of the finest careers modern football has ever seen. Terrifyingly, Ronaldinho and Messi played together at Blaugrana for four seasons and it led to the Brazilian being awarded the Ballon d’Or during that time.

He appreciated what the diminutive Argentine would bring to teams even during his informative years and said:  “Leo Messi reminds me more of Maradona, both left-footed and short, Messi is the best player in the world, along with Kaka and Cristiano Ronaldo.

Barcelona's Carles Puyol (L), Ronaldinho

“For us it is not a surprise. Since he began to come and train with us and we knew we would go down this path. Someday I will explain that I was at the birth of one of the footballing greats: Leo Messi.”

(You may also be interested in – Ronaldinho’s Top 6 goals of his stellar career)

Messi could not fail to hide his admiration and appreciation for his former team mate when the news was officially announced and posted his own heartfelt message on his Instagram account in recognition of Ronaldinho’s decision to finally hang up his boots. 

Messi’s message read: “As I always said, I learned a lot by your side. I will always be grateful to you for how easy it was that you did everything to me when I got to the dressing room.

“I was lucky to share many things with you and I am very happy because, in addition to a phenomenon with the ball, you are a very great person and that is the most important thing.

“Even if you decide to leave, football will never forget your smile. All the best, Ronnie.”

FBL-COSTA RICA-RONALDINHO-VISIT

Although it is the end with regards to playing professional football, Ronaldinho’s brother and agent Roberto Assis confirmed that his sibling will take part in a number of tribute events across the world to maintain his profile. Assis said: “He has stopped, it is ended,

“We will do various events in Brazil, Europe and Asia and, of course, we are arranging something with the Brazilian team as well.”


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Ronaldinho’s retirement will be a loss to world football, but the memories of his magical skills, electrifying bursts of pace, wonderful goals and achievements for his various clubs and his appetite to represent his country will long be remembered. 

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Barcelona’s Paulinho Staring Down the Barrel of a Month on the Sidelines With Suspected Foot Injury

?Barcelona midfielder Paulinho is reportedly facing the prospect of a month on the sidelines after suffering a foot injury in the club’s defeat to Espanyol in the Copa del Rey quarter-final on Wednesday night. 

The Brazilian was substituted just eight minutes into the second half proceedings at Cornella-El Prat after he signalled to the club’s bench that he was not fit to continue.

Barcelona v Deportivo La Coruna - La Liga

The 29-year-old will undergo a series of tests and scans with the club’s medical team on Thursday which will determine the extent of the injury, with a fracture to his fifth metatarsal in his right foot considered to be the worst case scenario – as per ?AS

If tests confirm a fracture, it will ensure Paulinho faces up to a month on the sidelines, with the final results set to be received by no later than Thursday. 

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(You may also be interested in ?Gerard Pique Officially Agrees New Long-Term Contract With Barcelona Until June 2022)

The 29-year-old was a surprise target for ?Barcelona throughout the summer, but his return of eight goals in 24 appearances across all competitions has somewhat quieted his critics who have made note of his journey from ?Tottenham, to Guangzhou Evergrandein the Chinese Super League and now Camp Nou. 

Barcelona’s defeat at the hands of Espanyol was the club’s first since the Spanish Super Cup this season and although the frustrating game ended his side’s unbeaten streak, manager Ernesto Valverde remained optimistic that the second-leg will see the club’s fans drive the team to victory. 

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He told ?AS: “The team that are ahead [going into the second leg] are the favourites. When we drew in Vigo, we were slight favourites. Now the result doesn’t favour us. This is the cup, and we have to keep going right to the last.

“It’s the cup, and we hope they help us. Their [Espanyol’s] fans drove them on today, and I hope ours do the same.”

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Looking Back to the 6 Best Goals of Ronaldinho’s Career Following His Retirement From Football

This week in football news Ronaldinho said goodbye to football, and in turn the world said goodbye to him as the 37-year-old retired from football. He is a player that will go down in the hall of fame of football if/when they decide to build the sacred place. 

His football exuded hope, joy and happiness, and we all basked in the grandeurs of his playing career. From Youtube sensation to World Cup glory, from Gremio to Barcelona, Ronaldinho has left behind an archive full of great memories, goals and skills for the fans around the world. 

He played with a smile on face, forever flashing his pearly whites. His joy for the game spread infectiously to every corner of the planet. He was the pioneer of skills, that had both kids and adults practising his skills the very next day.

An illustrious career reaches an end of its story, but which goal was your favourite? 

As an homage to the great Brazilian, here is a top six list of Ronaldinho’s best goals…

6. vs. England, 2002

In World Cup 2002 Ronaldinho subjected England keeper David Seaman to a lifetime of jokes, in what became an unforgettable moment for England.

Paul Scholes makes a needless rash tackle conceding a foul in a position that you would expect a free kick to be whipped in for a cross. Though, Ronaldinho had other plans. Spotting Seaman off his line, trying to anticipate the Brazilian’s cross, Ronaldinho made him pay for his assumptions. 

The freekick was swung in, but it looped over a sheepish Seaman. Did he mean to score? Ronaldinho has created a CV full of being cheeky, so you wouldn’t doubt him attempting to score.

5. vs. Villarreal, 2006

Ronaldinho’s cheekiness is boundless. Throughout his career he has always sought to break the boundaries on the outrageous ways he can score goals. This goal that completed the 4-0 rout against Villarreal was just another example of his sacred ingenuity. 

A well-timed overhead pass from Xavi found Ronaldinho who had sprung the offside trap. His chest control of the ball took him away from goal, which was perhaps seen as a mistake on his part, but on closer inspection it was to shield the ball away from the oncoming Villarreal defender.

Thinking that he had done his job of taking the Brazilian away from the threat of goal, the opponent then stood in shock as Ronaldinho delved into the realm of cheekiness to unleash an improbable overhead kick.

4. vs. Guingamp 2002

Ronaldinho was forever loved in Paris, during his time for Paris Saint Germain. He constantly entertained fans with outrageous skills, and constantly left strewn bodies of defenders in his wake.

His goal away at Gunigamp in the season of 2002/03 was a goal that showed his unstoppable ability on the dribble. Picking the ball up on the halfway line, Ronaldinho played a one-two, before clipping the ball over an oncoming tackle. 

The last few defenders left in his sight were turned into a confused state with his mesmerising step-overs, culminating with the most cheeky dink over the Guingamp goalkeeper.

3. vs. Sevilla, 2003

Ronaldinho arrived at Barcelona with some fans holding reservations over his signing. He didn’t look like your traditional Barcelona player. He was zealous, flamboyant, and had his overly slicked hair tied down in a ponytail.

But on one night, in a game against Sevilla, with one thunderous strike, the Brazilian put those reservations to an eternal sleep, as he rifled a 30-yard shot in off the crossbar. 

2. vs. Real Madrid, 2005

Any goal that invokes a standing ovation from your bitter rivals deserves to be in the list, and Ronaldinho did just that. Real Madrid fans are born to hate anything Barcelona, but on one night, they fell in awe with Barcelona’s Ronaldinho.

His performance at the Santiago Bernabéu was so scintillating that it made Madrid fans forget about their allegiances. A performance culminated in a solo goal laden with skipping past the most lacklustre of tackles.

It was almost as if the Madrid players conceded to his greatness. Who could blame them? Because on that night, he was beyond great. 

1. vs. Chelsea, 2005

If you were to ask anyone to recall any iconic Ronaldinho goal, they’d retell the events of his goal at Stamford Bridge.

It was March 8th and Barcelona visited Chelsea in the first knockout round of the Champions League. It was the second leg, which means the stakes were high. 

Ronaldinho picked up the ball on the edge of the Chelsea area; surrounded by one, two, three, maybe four Chelsea players, time seemed to stop, or perhaps the Brazilian in all his glory slowed time down to a deafening silence. 

He struck fear in his foes, and capitalising on their hesitation, with one lithe movement of his right leg he darted a flick, with the outside of his boot, into the back of the Chelsea goal, in the blink of an eye.

It took a while for the Chelsea players to wake up from their comatose state to discover what had actually transpired.

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Ernesto Valverde Coy Over Barca Success & Claims the ‘Best is Yet to Come’ Ahead of Copa Del Rey

Ernesto Valverde has said that there is not one specific moment that has been his best experience as the Barcelona manager since taking over the reigns at the Camp Nou in July, claiming that he hopes “the best is yet to come.”

The 53-year-old took over Barcelona at the beginning of the season, his latest appointment in an impressive 15-year career as a manager.

However, when asked what his best moment was with the Blaugrana ahead of the Derbi barceloní, Valverde struggled to pick one standalone moment.

“There’s no special moment in my Barça career so far,” he said, as quoted by Sport. “There are many moments which have been important.

“The comeback against La Real, the games against Juve – the game at home especially because it came early on, it was important and it served to win the group. The away game, too. But I hope the best is yet to come.”

Barcelona return to action on Wednesday for the first-leg of their Copa del Rey quarter-final match against their local rivals, RCD Espanyol.

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The Blaugrana secured a breathtaking 8-0 win over Real Murcia over two legs in their first Copa del Rey fixture of the season, with an aggregate 6-1 thumping of Celta Vigo helping Valverde’s side reach the quarter-finals.

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Neymar’s Lawyer Shows Off the Incredible Cheque Used to Bring the Brazilian to PSG

?The lawyer of Brazilian footballing sensation and world’s most expensive player Neymar has show his Instagram followers the cheque used to pay for the 25-year-old’s transfer from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain, and it’s pretty fascinating stuff.

Despite the fact that there have been reports claiming that Neymar regrets his move to PSG, one man who definitely doesn’t is his lawyer – Marcos Motta. There’s absolutely no doubt that he made a shed load of money on the Brazilian’s transfer and you can tell how proud he is of the switch just by viewing his current Instagram story.

The super lawyer, who boasts over 7,000 followers on Instagram – and quite regularly promotes his fitness website ‘Be Bang’, has a print out of the cheque used to move Neymar from Catalonia to Paris framed on his desk – along with various other interesting show-off pieces.

Now, by the time you come to reading this article, it is very likely that the story will have expired. But fear not. Thankfully, we’re switched on enough to have caught a screenshot of the cheque, so no one is to miss out; take a look right here:

Cheque

There it is in all its glory. How magnificent? The amount of zeros on that is nuts.

Obviously all the finer details have to be covered up and there’s no actual proof that the piece of paper itself is regarding Neymar, but come on – who’s going round just throwing €220m away like that?

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The current rumours floating around are that Real Madrid are interested in bringing Neymar back to La Liga, and have set aside €200m for his return – but you can’t help but think that PSG are going to give him up without a fight; and that’s if he even wants to leave.

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