The big news out of Brazil on Thursday morning centered around a player well-known to soccer fans worldwide. Former Barcelona and AC Milan star Ronaldinho has been freed from his contract with Brazilian giants Flamengo following a dispute over unpaid wages. (Portuguese)
'Dinho was heavily linked to the LA Galaxy in early 2011, but the move never materialized as he headed back to his home country after leaving Milan.
However, he is now on the market, and though the 32-year-old is all but certainly past his glory days on the European stage, there will be no shortage of clubs both at home and abroad interested in his services. After all, he has appeared for Brazil as recently as a February 29 friendly win over Bosnia and Herzegovina, and put in a strong showing against Mexico in the Brazil's 2-1 win over El Tri last October.
Might the Galaxy come or another MLS club come calling once more, or will he opt to go somewhre else, either in Brazil or abroad? He certainly wouldn't be cheap – the dispute with Flamengo was reportedly over wages totaling just shy of $20 million.
Even if MLS does make a move, would Ronaldinho be able to cut it in the physically-inclined league or would he be better off elsewhere? There is no doubting his otherworldy skill and vision, but he's also shown a propensity for Rio's nightlife in the past few years, with his recent performances raising questions about his fitness levels.
Would this onetime superstar be worth the investment for an MLS team? What's next in his storied, if occasionally turbulent, career? We'll certainly know more in the coming weeks. In the meantime, weigh in with your comments below.