It's official (well, as official as an unsourced report about private messages to friends can be): Ronaldinho, one of the greatest entertainers in the long history of professional soccer, is set to retire from the game in May.
The report, from Brazil's Extra, suggests 'Dinho has texted his buddies to let them know he's coming home after he wraps up his current season for Queretaro in Mexico. And he wants to have a party.
Some might consider "Ronaldinho is organizing a party" to be among the less sensational news items of the past decade, but such opinions reflect a jaded take on the soccer world that is scarcely worth considering. Extra is a website with an eye for the uncomfortable truths.
A helpful sidebar next to the Ronaldinho story points to Extra's top five "most read" stories of recent times. These include a report about a picture of Camila Silva, wife of Leo Moura (recently signed by Fort Lauderdale Strikers), in a bikini. And one about Dixie Pratt, girlfriend of Romario, and her decision to wear sweatpants in a photo. And an Instagram post of Dentinho - who plays for Shakhtar Donetsk - wearing a hat near his sunbathing wife, Dani Souza.
The Ronaldinho story doesn't meet the exacting leisure-wear standards typically promoted by Extra's reporting, but sometimes a news organization has to ask its readers to trust its integrity. 'Dinho is retiring, and you can't always get
a picture of someone in a swimsuit on-the-record confirmation when you need it. We're just going to have to take Extra's word for it.
The sad news would appear to spell the end of one of RBNY's favorite rumors of recent years: Ronaldinho is coming to MLS, and specifically to the New York Red Bulls. The press had some fun with the idea last summer. And in 2012. And in 2011. And even as far back as 2008.
And now it's over. 'Dinho is heading home to have a party in May. He'll never be speculatively linked to RBNY again.
Still, when one door closes, another one opens. There remains one club in New York with a proven affection for retired soccer superstars. The ball is in your court, New York Cosmos.