It says much about Ronaldinho that he was genuinely moved to have been voted Man of the Match as FC Barcelona started their UEFA Champions League defence in fine style last night.
The beaming Brazilian was largely responsible for the heady heights that culminated in Barça claiming the trophy on a damp night in Paris last May. It was equally sodden in the Catalan capital yesterday, with heavy rain descending on the Camp Nou, and ultimately flooding the players' tunnel, dressing rooms and press conference area. That did not stop Barcelona though, with Ronaldinho sealing a majestic 5-0 victory against PFC Levski Sofia with a terrific solo goal in added time.
It may have only been one win at the start of what Barcelona hope will be another triumphant 13-match campaign, but Ronaldinho was in ebullient mood. "I hope the supporters liked the match we played tonight," he told uefa.com. "We are growing more and more confident and to carry on this way is the best we can do." He was quick to pay tribute to Levski, on their UEFA Champions League debut, despite the margin of victory.
"The match was tough, against a team that plays well. We were good enough to score early and that gave us more time to breathe and play better," Ronaldinho added. "But then the rain came and that tires you out more. But it was great for me to score a goal in the last minute of the match and please the fans. We know all the group matches will be complicated but our objective is to improve match by match." The champions have sounded their warning.
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