Messi offers support for Ronaldinho after his mother's death

‘A big hug for you and the whole family’: Lionel Messi leads support for former Barcelona team-mate Ronaldinho after his mother Miguelina passed away at 71 after testing positive for Covid-19

  • Miguelina died in Ronaldinho’s birthplace of Porto Alegre at the age of 71
  • Lionel Messi, who spent four seasons as Ronaldinho’s team-mate, paid tribute
  • Former clubs Paris Saint-Germain and Atletico Mineiro paid their condolences
  • Ronaldinho’s career spanned 20 years and saw him make 699 club appearances 

Lionel Messi has lead the tributes to former Barcelona team-mate and footballing icon Ronaldinho after the death of his mother. 

Miguelina, who was 71, was taken to Mae de Deus Hospital in Ronaldinho’s birthplace of Porto Alegre in December after testing positive for Covid-19, with her death reported by Peruvian national TV station America over the weekend.   

Messi, who won two La Liga titles and a Champions League with the Brazilian under Frank Rijkaard, posted on Instagram: ‘Ronnie, I have no words. I can’t believe it. 

Miguelina (left) died in Ronaldinho’s birthplace of Porto Alegre after contracting Covid-19

Lionel Messi and Ronaldinho won two LaLiga titles together and the 33-year-old paid tribute

‘Just sending you a lot of strength and a big hug for you and the whole family. I’m very sorry. Rest in peace.’

Two of Ronaldinho’s former clubs, Atletico Mineiro and Paris Saint-Germain, have also paid tribute. 

The Brazilian team posted on Twitter: ‘It is with great sadness that Clube Atlético Mineiro receives the news of the death of Dona Miguelina, mother of Ronaldinho.

‘The Atleticana Family is in mourning and shares the moment of pain with their idol. May God welcome you with open arms and comfort the heart of our eternal ace. Rest in peace, Dona Miguelina.’

PSG wrote: ‘Paris Saint-Germain extends its deepest condolences to Ronaldinho and his brother Roberto following the death of their mother. [You have] all our support in this moment filled with sadness.’ 

Ronaldinho’s senior career began with local side Gremio, where he spent three seasons before moving to the French capital in 2001. 

Former clubs Atletico Mineiro and Paris Saint-Germain also posted messages of condolence

Twenty-five goals and 17 assists in 77 games across all competitions convinced Barca to stump up €30million (£21m) for his services. 

It was at the Nou Camp where the attacking midfielder announced himself to the world, wowing crowds with scarcely believable tricks and flicks and scooping two FIFA World Player of the Year awards along with five trophies under Rijkaard’s stewardship. 

A stint at AC Milan saw Ronaldinho win Serie A before spells in his homeland with Flamengo, Atletico Mineiro and Fluminense followed. 

He retired in 2018, having scored 266 goals in 699 club appearances and 33 goals in 97 caps for Brazil, with whom he most notably won the 2002 World Cup. 

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