South American Soccer

Ronaldinho finds a new home (but not in MLS)

RonaldinhoAtletico (Getty)

Less then a week after leaving Flamengo and suing his former club for unpaid wages, Ronaldinho has found a new team. No, he won't be coming to MLS just yet. He will be staying in Brazil for now.

Ronaldinho signed with Atletico Mineiro on Monday, inking a short-term deal for the rest of the year. The former Barcelona superstar is 32, and there are questions about his commitment to the game, but that didn't stop Atletico Mineiro from taking a chance on the playmaker.

Should MLS fans be disappointed? Considering the unsettled state of Ronaldinho's career, and the fact an MLS team would have had to risk millions to lure him to America, it is probably for the best that he stays in Brazi. It's a shame though, because there was always a sense that the wizard would make his way to MLS one day. At this point, it seems highly unlikely a team would take the chance on him, and even more unlikely he would come here at a discount price.

What do you think of Ronaldinho's latest move? Think he still has something left in the tank? Would you take a chance on him if you ran an MLS team?

Share your thoughts below.

  • Jeff Hadley

    I understand the allure of bringing him into the MLS from a marketing perspective, but from a productivity and organizational perspective, teams should spend their money more wisely and utilize the colleges more.


    • ronaldinho

      ronaldinho is the best and no he should not go to the MLS because that league sucks thats why beckham left.ronaldinho should go to real madrid or man city or at least PSG but should not go to the MLS because thats where they retire and he aint ready to retire


  • DCUPedro

    That’s a silly question. Why would anyone? Why would Beckham and Henry? A new challenge; new money. Hell, flamengo was bouncing this bro’s checks. He could do worse.


  • DCUPedro

    Yeah, so… Even if he wanted to come to MLS, the chances that he wanted to play in Denver approach… Absolute zero. One of the problems the league needs to address long term is the imbalance created by NY an LA gobbling up elite players that have the opportunity to be choosy.


  • bryan

    Meh, it’s just short term. Absolutely. Absolutely.

    I’m hoping he’ll come after the short term. If anything, this gives MLS teams a chance to negotiate while he gets to still play regular minutes.


  • Michael Stypulkoski

    The United States is still a very appealing place to live. Especially if you’re rich, and in New York or California.


  • Michael Stypulkoski

    If I’m an MLS club looking for a past-his-best Brazilian, I’m targeting Kaka. He could still be a difference maker, if not an absolute stud. Ronaldhino, on the other hand – who knows?


  • Grubbsbl

    I hear yeah, to a degree. However, Dinho would have produced offensively in MLS. He did drop off a bit recently but he play overall was fine. Sure, no matter what Taylor Twellman and Alexi Lalas would bad mouth his effort.
    Heck, they take shots at Henry – the clowns. Put Dinho on a team with some other players willing to do the running to create space and he would pick defenses apart.

    Our league is going to continue to succeed without Dinho. I just think spending some big bucks to bring that extra level of quality would be positive.


  • Jay

    Lol and how are they supposed to do that? Tell NY and LA to stop getting superstar players. Look its LA and NY its just the way it is. Real Madrid and Barca being in some of the greatest cities in the world doesn’t hurt. And with MLS having a cap its not going to be about the pay but more about the city and atmosphere that surrounds it. I think RSL has a great stadium good fans and great ownership however they are in Salt Lake. LA v Salt Lake which one would you choose if the money was the same.


  • Brad

    Athletico Mineiro is practically the laughing stock of Brazilian football. They are the LA Clippers and Cruzeiro, their in town rival is like the LA Lakers (at least before the Clippers got good).


  • Brad

    In Brazil the team is often called “galo” which is their team mascot, a rooster.


  • Snyder

    I’d love to see Dinho money put toward 2-3 in-their-prime, $2M/year attacking players instead and finally have an MLS team beat a Mexican League team in CCL.

    That should be the objective and that would move the needle far more than another old has-been.


  • tacklebreaker

    It’s all about the $$$. Players will play anywhere for big $$$.


  • BCC

    Seriously, who cares? He is not the same player he was back in his glory days with Barca.

    I will be inclined to pay more attention to MLS when it no longer spends money on washed-up players who lack commitment.


  • somedude

    at least he is not going to China. seriously, China and Qatar are snapping everyone up.


  • bigprof

    wise up Michael, the only appealing thing to a soccer player is money. Hell, even 3rd world countries have some Hyatt or Marriott in its capital that he could live at during season and not give a sh&& what it looks like. Pony-up the big bucks MLS!


  • Hoover

    Your comparison is wildly inaccurate. Cruzeiro has won a couple more championships, but Atletico has a stranglehold lead on the head-to-head match up. It would take consecutive Cruzeiro wins for the next decade to get close to evening up the series.

    I’d love to hear who you think the Celtics are in this analogy. Sao Caetano? Vitoria? Ponte Preta?


  • Jonathan

    We are delusional if we think we wouldn’t be lucky to have him plaw here.. Mild is a complete joke, and we have the nerve to sit around here and be about a mls team “taking a chance on him” haha more like would be take a chance on what would essentially be a humanitarian position by playing in the mls… Risk of injury? Check, low wages? Check, political turmoil?? Check- see this election year, why are we Americans so dumb and arrogant?? We should beg dinho to come play here, problem is mls is a crap league, has no money, and Americans are too dumb to appreciate soccer


  • flagermunsen

    He should join Drogba in China. Anzhi is probably willing to pair him with Eto’o.


  • Juan

    Where is LA in the standings right now? With 3 designated players? Then need Ronaldinho, its only FAIR that they get a fourth designated player



    First off if you think MLS has no money then you’re on crack.Just look at the owners idiot, there is a plan in place not to splurge like the bankrupt teams in Europe. MLS avg’s more fans than the Brasileiro or whatever its called and to call Americans 2 dumb to appreciate soccer is criminal. Have you seen the attendances at friendly’s? Or even WC94? Heck even MLS is going to avg close to 20,000 by the end of the summer. Dinho is sh*it, lazy since the days at Barca so i cant even imagine how bad it would be here. No to Dinho, give me guys like Seedorf…class act and always gives it his all when hes on the pitch


  • AdamM

    He went to Flamengo because he wanted to stay in the national team and Olympic conversation and live in Rio, which is tremendous with his kind of money (or even not), and more forgiving of his love of nightlife. His play was similar to Milan, world class at times, but disappointing overall and frustratingly bad at times. He had one last shot at the national team, but is well out of favor now. A-MG is a major step down, and even his former team Gremio didn’t want him, but that move seems temporary given his mother is ill and he wants to stay in Brazil for now. Someone will undoubtedly pay him lots of money again. He’s probably not likely to come to MLS – there’s a reason no big Brasilian star has yet. But he would be worth a two year contract if the team understood what it was getting and didn’t need to him to run. He is still a deadly passer and free kick taker, still has incredible vision. He just doesn’t run much or track back. He is a limited weapon, if you will, but a deadly one. Inquiry the right place, it could work. He certainly sell a lot of shirts and tickets regardless.


  • Helium-3

    Because he would get paid, at least on a regular basis. Ronaldinho is a dumbass by still playing while he was not being paid and let that deficit run up to $20 Million.

    How many people would still continue going to work knowing you haven’t been paid for that long. If they couldn’t pay 1 – 2 million, what makes you think they are going to pay you when it is 20 million?


  • Brett

    He needs to be playing in Brazil if he wants any chance of playing in another World Cup. As it stands he has an outside shot at best, but it would certainly disappear altogether if he were to play in a step-down league like MLS.

    After 2014 he will play a couple seasons in MLS, I would put money on it.


  • Sgc

    Soccer stars enjoy living in the US partially because you can take the train to the game and not be mobbed, as Henry did.


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