Ronaldinho made headlines over the weekend after scoring five superb goals for Goa in a 7-2 demolition of Paul Scholes’ Bengaluru in the Indian Futsal League.
The Brazilian looked a cut above every other player on the court and delighted those who had paid to be inside the arena, plus millions more across the globe who watched the footage at home.
However, Ronaldinho’s Indian adventure is already over after just two appearances.
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The 36-year-old has accepted the role of Brand Ambassador at the Paralympic Games in Rio and is now heading back to Brazil.
He will be replaced by his compatriot, Cafu, the legendary Brazilian right-back.
Ronaldinho's letter emerges online
A letter has emerged online - verified by The Sun - in which he explains his reasons for leaving the Indian Futsal League.
“I have had an amazing time playing in Chennai,” the letter, published on Twitter, says. “Unfortunately, just when I was getting in my groove and getting to know the country better, I have to go back, as my country needs me.
“The para-Olympics committee has honoured me to be their ambassador, which requires me to be in Brazil.
“I was looking forward towards being in Goa, but I learnt only yesterday of this development. I am delighted to spend these days in your beautiful country and promote the game I grew up playing.
“But I promise to be back for Season 2 of Premier Futsal, much stronger.
"I am leaving you in great hands, Cafu, will replace me as your marquee player. He is a very dear friend and is a top quality player and I am sure he will light the league up.”
This year’s Rio Carnival has already happened, so it’s fair to assume Ronaldinho is telling the truth.
But what a shame that he will no longer showcase his skills out on the futsal courts.
Great to see Ronaldinho happy playing football again
For the first time in years - possibly since he left Barcelona - he looked happy and motivated to be doing what he does best: playing football.
Unquestionably one of the most gifted footballers ever, Ronaldinho was utterly brilliant - untouchable, even - for four seasons at the Camp Nou, but his career went downhill soon after leaving Catalonia.
Sadly, he might look back on his career in years to come and wonder what might have been had he not fallen out of love with the game.
But one thing can never be taken away from him: the fact he gave joy to so many people around the world.
Where does Ronaldinho sit in the pantheon of all-time greats? Have your say by leaving a comment below.
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