Brazilian football legend Ronaldinho’s day out in Kolkata was full with surprises, including launching Durga Puja pandals, trying his hand at cooking, and defeating a lawmaker to score a goal.
The football superstar is visiting the City of Joy for the first time, where football matches are frequently more popular than cricket matches. Football greats Lionel Messi, Pele, and Diego Maradona have all previously visited Kolkata.
The day before yesterday, the 2002 FIFA World Cup star arrived in Kolkata. At the airport, many people had assembled to greet their favorite player. Minister Sujit Bose of West Bengal greeted Ronaldinho.
The 43-year-old football legend was cheered wherever he went while wearing shorts, a baggy t-shirt, and his trademark cap.
He opened a football academy at Rajarhat, close to Kolkata, to begin the day. Young football players will be trained at the R10 Academy using a curriculum created by the football star.
A number of kids had gathered at the academy, and their patience paid off when Ronaldinho demonstrated his entrancing dribbling skill that the crowd had only ever seen on television.
The Sreebhumi Sporting Club puja pandal in Lake Town, Kolkata, was Ronaldinho’s next trip. When he was received with a tilak on the forehead, he was in for a pleasant surprise. In addition to opening the pandal, he danced with his supporters while they held Brazilian flags. Not only that, though. The major organizer of the Sreebhumi Sporting Club puja and a sports lover, Bengal minister Bose, asked the football star to take a shot at a football net guarded by him. Ronaldinho made score.
Then, at a Maradona statue in the city, the football legend paid honors. The Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s house in Kalighat was the next stop. The Chief Minister gave him a football as well as a shawl as a token of his welcome. Additionally present were representatives from Mohun Bagan, East Bengal, and Mohammedan Sporting, three of the city’s finest football clubs. The teams gave Ronaldinho their jerseys as a present. He also went to the Indian Football Association’s trophy unveiling event.
The football sensation later opened two additional Durga Puja pandals in Narendrapur and Baruipur, two Kollkata districts. A supporter greeted Ronaldinho by touching his feet in Baruipur. In addition, he received footballs, which he kicked into the audience to loud cheering.
After that, Ronaldinho went to an Emami event and briefly tried his hand at cooking. Next, he posed with a bottle of mustard oil in one hand and a delicious Hilsa fish in the other for the picture of the day.
Ronaldinho will play in an exhibition game in Maheshtala, a town close to Kolkata, on the second day of his two-day vacation. The enthusiasm of the city’s football supporters indicates that Durga Puja has come early for them.