Best Known For
Soccer superstar Ronaldinho was a member of Brazil's 2002 World Cup championship team and twice won the FIFA World Player of the Year award.
Think you know about Biography?
Answer questions and see how you rank against other players.Play Now
While leading his team to a variety of junior championships, Ronaldinho immersed himself in Brazil's long and glorious soccer history, studying past greats such as Pelé, Rivelino and Ronaldo, and dreaming of following in their footsteps. Then, in 1997, a teenaged Ronaldinho won a call-up to Brazil's Under-17 national team. The squad won the FIFA Under-17 World Championship in Egypt, and Ronaldinho was selected as the tournament's best player. Soon afterward,
Ronaldinho signed his first professional contract to play for Grêmio, one of the most celebrated teams in the Brazilian league.
Ronaldinho made his senior debut for Grêmio in the 1998 Copa Libertadores tournament. The next year, he was invited to join the senior Brazilian national team to compete in the Confederations Cup in Mexico. Brazil turned in a second-place finish, and Ronaldinho won the Golden Ball Award as the tournament's best player as well as the Golden Boot Award as its leading goal scorer.
Firmly established as a star on the international stage, in 2001 Ronaldinho left Brazil for Europe, signing a contract to play for Paris Saint-Germain in France. A year later, he participated in his first World Cup on a loaded Brazilian squad that also featured Ronaldo and Rivaldo. Ronaldinho scored two goals in five matches, including the game-winner in a quarter-final victory over England, and Brazil went on to defeat Germany in the finals to claim its fifth World Cup title.
In 2003, Ronaldinho fulfilled a lifelong dream by joining FC Barcelona of the Spanish league, one of the world's most storied clubs, and winning the legendary No. 10 jersey typically worn by the squad's greatest creative player. In 2004 and 2005, Ronaldinho won back-to-back FIFA World Player of the Year awards, the sport's highest individual honor. He also led his teammates to the pinnacle of club success in 2006 with a triumphant run through the prestigious Champions League tournament. The following month, Ronaldinho headlined a very talented Brazilian squad that entered the World Cup with sky-high expectations. The tournament ended in disappointment for the defending champs, though, as France knocked Brazil out with a stunning upset in the quarter-finals.
In 2008, Ronaldinho left Barcelona to join another of the world's most renowned clubs, A.C. Milan, but his performance for the Italian Series A giant was mostly nondescript. Underscoring his fading status, the former World Player of the Year was not included in the 2010 Brazilian team that competed in the World Cup in South Africa.
In 2011, Ronaldinho returned to Brazil to play for Flamengo in Rio de Janeiro. The relationship between the club and its most prominent player got off to a great start when Flamengo won the 2011 Campeonato Carioca, but things turned sour by the following season. Ronaldinho missed several practices and performed indifferently in games, and eventually had his contract terminated due to unpaid wages. Ronaldinho signed with Atlético Mineiro in June 2012, a move that reignited his dynamic playmaking abilities, and he was given another shot with the national team to make the 2014 World Cup roster.
profile name: Ronaldinho profile occupation:
Sign in with Facebook to see how you and your friends are connected to famous icons.
Your Friends' Connections
Included In These Groups
Famous Arians 564 people in this group
To Americans, it is soccer. Elsewhere, it is called football, calcio or nogomet. Whatever your preference, with estimates of more than 250 million participants across 200-plus countries, it is a game of unmatched global reach and popularity. It's been noted that one doesn't need special size or skills to play, but of course the game's all-time greats displayed dazzling combinations of speed, smarts and athletic ability throughout their careers. Look through our roster of soccer legends, including Lionel Messi, Cristiano Ronaldo and Diego Maradona, and you'll understand why this sport of many names is also known as "the beautiful game."
Famous Soccer Players 54 people in this group
Famous People Born in 1980 49 people in this group