Skip to main content Text Only version of this page
BBC
Home
TV
Radio
Talk
Where I Live
A-Z Index
BBC Sport World Cup 2002

 You are in: Team Pages: Brazil  
Front Page
Statistics
Team Pages
Features
Other News
Sports Talk
TV/Radio Coverage
Photo Galleries
Venues Guide
Matches Wallchart
World Cup Greats
History
Quiz

BBC Sport

BBC News

BBC Weather


Click on a name for more detailed team information:

Argentina
Belgium
Brazil
Cameroon
China
Costa Rica
Croatia
Denmark
Ecuador
England
France
Germany
Italy
Japan
Mexico
Nigeria
Paraguay
Poland
Portugal
Rep of Ireland
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Senegal
Slovenia
South Africa
South Korea
Spain
Sweden
Tunisia
Turkey
USA
Uruguay

Friday, 12 April, 2002, 10:33 GMT 11:33 UK
Ronaldo's big adjustment
Brazil and Inter forward Ronaldo
Ronaldo is struggling to recover his fitness at Inter
BBC Sport Online's Tim Vickery

separator
space

Two goals in four minutes on Sunday were enough to send the Italian sporting press into overdrive.

"Ronaldo has returned to the way he was," said the Corriere Della Sera, Italy's most widely read newspaper, on its front page.

But football is a fickle sport and the media even more so.

Only two weeks ago the world was questioning if he would ever reach the heights he attained during France 98.

Ronaldo only played the first half of the warm-up game against Yugoslavia last month and was reduced to walking pace long before the interval.

Ronaldo was blowing like a dray horse after about 20 minutes.

Open Quote
Many in Brazil question whether he is anything more than a marketing phenomenon
Close Quote
But that brief cameo was long enough to demonstrate that he still has plenty to offer.

The 90 minutes and two goals for Inter have apparently confirmed that suspiscion.

The Brazilian public are entitled to feel a certain distance from the striker known in Italy as "the phenomenon".

Ronaldo left for Europe at the age of 17. Before the Yugoslavia friendly in March 2002 he had not played in Brazil since September 1999.

Throughout his long absence from activity he has continued to make headlines all over the world, leaving many in his homeland questioning whether he is anything more than a phenomenon of marketing.

Even his defenders saw him as a "star with just one move" - a player whose entire game was based on explosive running with the ball.

Brazil and Inter forward Ronaldo
Ronaldo did not play for Brazil for 30 months

But it is clear he has added other strings to his bow.

Like former England star Paul Gascoigne, Ronaldo may not have much in the way of formal education, but there is a well-tuned football intelligence at work.

Gascoigne came back from injury to play a key part in the England team of 1996 and 1997.

On his return he was a different player, less explosive but more collective.

Ronaldo has demonstrated he may be following a similar path.

Open Quote
The World Cup is weeks away - the odds are stacked against him
Close Quote

He has learned to drop deeper, draw the defence and thread passes through for his team-mates.

The icing on the cake came with the two late goals against Brescia and all the frustration and hard work now seem worthwhile.

At international level his new skills were on show against Yugoslavia and against Portugal we can expect him to be the fulcrum of Brazil's attack.

Whether he has the stamina to take part in the run-in to the hard-fought Italian title, which Inter have not claimed since 1989, remains to be seen.

And at the World Cup the odds would seem stacked against Ronaldo being able to get through seven high-pressure games in 28 days.

But the world will be watching and, if he manages to do it, nobody will be able to deny that he is a phenomenon indeed.

INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.
TOP STORIES FROM
BRAZIL
 TEAMS
 BRAZIL
Full coverage:
News and
features
Lineker's verdict
Statistics pages
World Cup so far
Have Your Say
BBCBrasil.com
 SQUAD PROFILES
 RESULTS/REPORTS

GROUP C
  P GD PTS
BRAZIL 3 +8 9
TURKEY 3 +2 4
COSTA RICA 3 -1 4
CHINA 3 -9 0

 WATCH/LISTEN
 BBC SPORT BULLETINS
 OUR BEST VIDEO
More Audio/Video




© BBC ^ Back to top

Front Page | Statistics | Team Pages | Features | Other News | Sports Talk | TV/Radio Coverage | Photo Galleries | Venues Guide | Matches Wallchart | World Cup Greats | History | Quiz

BBC Sport >> | BBC News >> | BBC Weather >>
BBC World Service >> | BBC Radio Five Live >>
© MMII | News Sources | Privacy