10 amazing football facts that will blow your mind

L to R: Ronaldo’s kit at 1996 Olympics, Ronaldo Nazario, Ronaldo Guiaro, Ronaldo Rodrigues & Ronaldo Moreira or Ronaldinho
Modified 05 Mar 2015
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Football – ‘The Beautiful Game’ is a phrase that is known and used by millions of fans around the world. But who gave the world’s favourite sport such a fitting name? Well, that is something that not many of us know.The man who is said to have called football ‘The Beautiful Game’ for the first time is a Brazilian footballer who goes by the name Edson Arantes do Nascimento, also known as Pelé.Pelé named his autobiography My Life and the Beautiful Game and the book's dedication reads: "I dedicate this book to all the people who have made this great game the Beautiful Game."There are plenty of such stories and facts about the game and its players that we love, live for and worship. Over the years, we have heard or read about many of them, but the history of football is so vast, that there will still be plenty left to know even for the most knowledgeable fans. 

#1 Ronaldo played in the 1996 summer Olympics with Ronaldinho written on his back

Ronaldo Luiz Nazario de Lima was part of the Brazil squad that won the World Cup in 1994 at the age of 17. But he came to be known as Ronaldinho (which means ‘Little Ronaldo’ in Portuguese) because Ronaldo Rodrigues de Jesus, his older teammate, was also called Ronaldo and was nicknamed Ronaldao (which tranlsates to ‘Big Ronaldo’).

In the 1996 Olympics, where Brazil won the bronze medal, Ronaldo played with the name Ronaldinho on his shirt since Ronaldo Guiaro, who was two years senior to him, was one of his teammates.

Three years later another Brazilian player with the name Ronaldo (full name: Ronaldo de Assis Moreira) joined the Brazilian national team, but by then, Ronaldo Nazario was the only other person with the same name in the squad. Therefore, Ronaldo Moreira was called Ronaldinho Gaucho and even today the whole world fondly calls him by the name Ronaldinho. 

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Published 26 Feb 2015
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