Ronaldinho turns 40: The day he stole the show against Manchester United legends in 2017

  • Rob Swan

Few players have provided football fans across the world with as much joy as Ronaldinho.

The Brazilian was outrageously good at his peak and is, without question, one of the most skilful footballers we’ve ever seen.

He would light up the Camp Nou most weeks during the mid-2000s and deservedly won the Ballon d’Or in 2005. For a couple of years, he was easily the world’s best player.

Ronaldinho honed his skills on Brazil’s futsal courts and was never afraid to try something different on the pitch during his professional career. Because he was so good, it would often pay off.

Furthermore – and this helped to make him such a universally-popular player – he always played with a smile on his face. It was impossible to dislike Ronaldinho. Well, Madridistas would probably argue otherwise, but you get the picture.

Saying that, Ronaldinho is one of the very few Barcelona players to earn a standing ovation from Real Madrid supporters after one particularly famous Clasico masterclass.

Ronaldinho last played professionally in 2015 following a brief stint with Fluminense, but he has made the odd cameo appearance in various charity matches since then.

The South American turned 40 on Saturday – unfortunately, he’s currently banged up in a Paraguayan prison – but we thought we’d look back at his best performance since bringing the curtain down on his illustrious career.

Back in the summer of 2017, a team of Manchester United legends – featuring the likes of Wes Brown, Dwight Yorke and Louis Saha – took on a team of Barcelona legends, which looked a lot stronger on paper.

As well as Ronaldinho, Barça’s side also included Rivaldo, Edgar Davids and Patrick Kluivert.

United legends sealed a surprise 3-1 victory, but Ronaldinho was the star of the show and deservedly picked up the Man of the Match award following a typically spellbinding performance.

You can watch a short highlights package of his best moments here…

The most outrageous moment, however, was this unbelievable nutmeg on Jesper Blomqvist…

There wasn’t any need for the cheeky no-look pass afterwards!

Most of you reading this were probably fortunate enough to have seen Ronaldinho at his peak.

But if you’re a younger football fan, then make sure you check out his best moments on YouTube. You’re in for an absolute treat.

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