Ronaldinho steps up Club World Cup bid

    By IANS,

    Rio de Janeiro: Ronaldinho has begun training with a ball for the first time in six weeks as he continues his quest to be fit for next month’s FIFA Club World Cup.

    The 33-year-old has been sidelined since rupturing the adductor muscle in his left groin while training with Atletico Mineiro in September.

    Ronaldinho did not hide his delight at joining his Atletico teammates during light ball work at the club’s Belo Horizonte training base Wednesday, reported Xinhua.

    “How I’ve missed training with the ball,” Ronaldinho wrote on Twitter.

    “It’s the home straight of my recuperation. Let’s give it all for the Club World Cup.”

    Ronaldinho’s swift recovery has surprised Atletico’s medical staff, who predicted the two-time FIFA world player of the year would miss up to three months.

    Atletico are now hopeful Ronaldinho will return to the pitch before the final round of the Campeonato Brasileiro Dec 8.

    The Club World Cup, featuring each of FIFA’s six continental club champions plus the host nation’s league winners, will be played in Morocco Dec 11- 21.

    Atletico Mineiro, who earned the right to play in the tournament by winning the Copa Libertadores final in July, are favourites to meet European champions Bayern Munich in the final.