World Cup winner Ronaldinho wows football fans in Kenya

Viden Ochieng

Grassroots football fans in Nairobi had a taste of Samba flavour from visiting Brazil legend Ronaldo de Assis Moreira popularly known as Ronaldinho Gaucho when he graced the Super 8 Champions League final between Jericho All Stars and Technical University of Kenya (TUK) yesterday.

Ronaldinho, who was in the country for three days, was the guest of honour as Jericho hammered TUK 3-0 to claim the trophy courtesy of a brace from John Owalla (47th and 53rd minutes) and Kevin Ndungu’s 88th minute goal.

In scenes reminiscent of a local derby game between Gor Mahia and AFC Leopards close to 7,000 fans attended the match, leaving the tiny Camp Toyoyo full to the brim with most of the fans eager to get a glimpse of the 2006 World Player of The Year.

Ronaldinho wowed the crowd with his artistry on the ball as he dribbled and juggled bringing nostalgic moments to football fans who watched him at his prime while playing for Paris Saint Germain (PSG), Barcelona and AC Milan as well as the Brazil national team.

The 2002 World Cup winner had also visited Kisumu on Saturday where he delighted hundreds of football fans with a taste of his magical moves as he graced a mini football tournament in the lakeside city.

The tournament, which featured SportPesa Premier League side Vihiga United, second tier outfits Kisumu All-Stars and new boys Eldoret Youth as well as minnows Bondo United, was staged at Moi Stadium.

Youngster Ivy Chepkirui of Nyakach Girls High School also had a day to remember as while most of her peers and other fans were kept at bay by the mean-looking security personnel, the 16-year-old got the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of playing with Ronaldinho.

Jericho received Sh100,000 for their win while second-placed TUK walked home with Sh50,000.

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