Andy Murray waxes lyrical about ‘absolute genius’ Ronaldinho

Andy Murray has hailed the ‘genius’ former Barcelona forward Ronaldinho and the tennis star says he would turn up early to his matches just to watch him practice. The Scot moved to the Spanish city aged 15 to help progress his tennis career, handing him the perfect opportunity to watch Ronaldinho play in La Liga.

The Brazilian football legend joined Barca in 2003 and enjoyed his prime years in the Catalan region. Murray was able to watch plenty of Los Blaugrana’s matches during his formative years in Spain.

The 36-year-old, a keen football fan who trialled with Rangers as a teenager, has described Ronaldinho as his ‘favourite athlete’ while he was growing up. He has admitted to arriving at Barca’s matches early to watch the eccentric star warm up.

“My favourite athlete growing up,” Murray posted on X, replying to a video of some of Ronaldinho’s best moments in the Champions League.

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“When I moved to Barcelona to train at 15 I got the chance to watch him live a bunch of times. Absolute genius. Always smiling. I’d arrive early at the stadium just to watch him warm up as he’d be doing ridiculous skills and tricks like in the video.”

Murray is preparing for the 2024 season after missing the Davis Cup. The two-time Wimbledon champion ominously revealed that he was not enjoying his tennis after a disappointing defeat to Alex De Minaur at the Paris Masters in October.

The Briton has not played since. “I’m not really enjoying it just now in terms of how I feel on the court and how I’m playing,” Murray said at the time.

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The last five, six months haven’t been that enjoyable, so I need to try to find some of that enjoyment back because playing a match like that there’s not much positivity there.

“When I play a good point, I’m not really getting behind myself and then, in the important moments, that will to win and fight that has always been quite a big, big part of my game [is not there].”

He added: “If I want to keep going, I’m going to need a lot of work. It’s not just going to be like one or two weeks of training to get me to where I need to get to, it’s going to have to be a lot of work and consistent work to give myself a chance.”

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