When young Ronaldo began participating in youth club matches at the age of eight he was always the youngest and the smallest player on the field, earning him the nickname Ronaldinho (a diminutive form of Ronaldo). Today, he is also known as Ronaldinho Gaúcho, especially when there is a risk of confusing him with fellow countryman Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima.
In addition to his flourishing league career, Ronaldinho has had plenty of success in the Brazilian national team.
Years Team Apps Gls
1998–2001 Grêmio 52 21
2001–2003 Paris Saint-Germain 55 17
2003–2008 Barcelona 145 70
2008–2010 Milan 76 20
2011– Flamengo 30 14
Years Team Apps Gls
1996 Brazil U17 6 2
1999 Brazil U20 5 3
2000–2008 Brazil U23 10 3
1999– Brazil 93 33
As a child, Ronaldinho played futsal and beach football before expanding into organized football. At the age of 13 he scored all 23 goals in a 23-0 victory against another local football team, a feat that attracted a certain amount of media attention. After playing in the Grêmio youth squad, Ronaldinho made his senior debut for Grêmio in 1998 when he participated in the Copa Libertadores.
In 2001, Ronaldinho inked a five year long contract with Paris Saint-Germain, and he made his league debut for the team on August 4 that year. He scored his first goal in October, and after the winter break he scored a series of impressive goals for Paris Saint-Germain and helped the team reach the semi-finals of the 2001/2002 Coupe de la Ligue.
In 2003 Ronaldinho joined FC Barcelona where he stayed until 2008. He suffered from an injury during the first half of intitial campaign with Barcelona, but returned in time to help his new team finish runner-up in the league. In 2004/2005, Barcelona won the league and Ronaldinho was named FIFA World Player of the Year.
Ronaldinho transferred to AC Milan in 2008 after signing a three-year contract. During his first season, he played 32 matches and scored 10 goals. During the next season, Ronaldinho gradually developed from attacking midfielder to left winger.
In 2011, Ronaldinho moved back to Brazil and joined Flamengo in Rio de Janeiro. Since Ronaldinhos arrival, Flamengo has won the Taça Guanabara, the Campeonato Carioca and the Taça Rio. He is currently contracted to play for Flamengo until 2014.
- Ronaldo de Assis Moreira was born in Porto Alegre, Brazil in 1980.
- Ronaldo’s mother Dona Miguelina Elói Assis dos Santos is a nurse, while Ronaldo’s father João de Assis Moreira was a shipyard worker. João also played fotball in a local club named Esporte Clube Cruzeiro.
- When Ronaldo was eight, his father died from a heart attack in the family swimming pool.
- When Ronaldo’s older brother Roberto signed with Grêmio, the family could move to a house in a more affluent part of Porto Alegre.
- Roberto’s career came to an end because of injury and he is today Ronaldinho’s manager.
- Ronaldinho has a sister named Deisi who works as his press coordinator.
- In 2005, Brazilian dancer Janaína Mendes gave birth to Ronaldino’s child, a boy who was named João after Ronaldinho’s father.
- Ronaldinho became a Spanish citizen in 2007.