The representatives of the former Ballon d’or winner have been in touch with the Chennai franchise…
Team Chennai are expected to hold another round of discussion with Ronaldinho and his representatives after the exhibition tie in Rome on September 1, 2014.
Ronaldinho is amongst the list of several high profile players such as Zinedine Zidane, Lionel Messi, Neymar, Samuel Eto’o and Andrea Pirlo to feature in the 2014 edition of the Match for Peace.
Prashant Agarwal, CEO of Kshatriya Sports and also one of the co-owners of the Chennai franchise, informed that discussions with Ronaldinho were initiated on the day of the international players’ draft of the Indian Super League (ISL) on August 21st, 2014.
The 34-year-old Ronaldinho has been without a club since leaving Atletico Mineiro in July. Palmeiras were close to roping in the former World Cup veteran as part of its centennial celebrations but the deal fell through eventually.
“Yes, we have been in touch with Ronaldinho and his representatives for the last one week or so. However, I would like to clarify that the numbers such as USD 3 million or 36 crores INR for two years doing the rounds in the market are absolutely false,” Agarwal told Goal from Rome.
Agarwal mentioned that he had played an important role in luring Alessandro Del Piero and David Trezeguet to be a part of the inaugural edition of the ISL by joining the Delhi Dynamos and FC Pune City.
“We have been in direct contact with Ronaldinho’s agent. If we can manage to get Del Piero and Trezeguet to India on our own, why would we need to approach Ronaldinho via a third party?” he questioned.
With Inter Milan likely to be a part of Team Chennai, which is owned by Bollywood star Abhishek Bachchan and the first cousin of Mukesh Ambani – Vita Dani, it is reliably learnt that Javier Zanetti would also play an important role to lure the Brazilian star to India.
It must be noted that one of the charitable projects who have led the Match for Peace initiative is Fondazione P.U.P.I Onlus, founded by Zanetti and his wife Paula, a foundation promoting and supporting long-distance adoption programs. Goal has been named as the official media partner for the event.