Playing for PSG and AC Milan, and making his name with Barcelona, the attacking midfielder was a skilful player of the highest order. Ronaldinho earned 97 caps for the Brazilian national team - winning the World Cup in 2002 - and won an amazing 14 domestic titles at club level. He was part of Barcelona’s Champions League-winning team of 2006, and won league titles in Brazil, Spain and Italy.
Having played for one of the best teams of the mid-2000’s, the now-34 year old was always going to come up against some of the best players of the decade. In 2005, he was named the Ballon d’Or winner, with Frank Lampard in second place, and the ex-Chelsea midfielder is just one of four Premier League legends in Ronaldinho’s Champions League dream team.
Published by the Mail, the Brazilian named Lampard alongside Chelsea teammates John Terry and Claude Makelele, as well as Arsenal legend Thierry Henry - whom Ronaldinho played with for Barca. Speaking of his choices, Ronaldinho called Makelele the ‘best I have ever seen doing the job of protecting the defence’, whileTerry was called the ‘fantastic leader’ needed in big Champions League games.
Considering all four players picked have been some of the brightest stars in European football across the last decade, it is no surprise that Ronaldinho has named them. There are some notable omissions - Steven Gerrard certainly has a claim to be in there - but the entire starting XI represents a roll call of footballs finest.
Ronaldinho’s Champions League dream team: Buffon; Cafu, Terry, Maldini, Roberto Carlos; Makelele, Lampard, Kaka; Messi, Henry, Ronaldo