Okocha and Ronaldinho bring spirit of champions to Kazan

Okocha and Ronaldinho bring spirit of champions to Kazan

It was Kazan’s turn to host the FIFA Confederations Cup Park this weekend. Just like in Moscow and Sochi over the last fortnight, the local fans were treated to an amazing experience as world football legends Ronaldinho and Jay-Jay Okocha came to visit.

The former won the FIFA World Cup™ and the FIFA Confederations Cup for Brazil during a stellar career, while the latter won Olympic gold for Nigeria and remains one of the best players to come out of Africa.

Both were also victorious in their respective continental championships.

Ronaldinho and Okocha were accompanied on their trip to the capital of the Republic of Tatarstan by 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ Ambassador Alexey Smertin and Host City Kazan Ambassador Elmira Kalimullina.

“Supporters from all over the world will visit Kazan and say how great Russia is,” said Smertin confidently.

“I spoke with Okocha and he was delighted with the welcome he received. Jay-Jay visited the Kremlin and the stadium, whereas Ronaldinho was surrounded wherever he went.”

As well as meeting the two stars, visitors to the park saw the FIFA Confederations Cup Trophy that Ronaldinho brought onto the stage, took photos with the Official Mascot Zabivaka™ and tested themselves at various competitions and attractions.

Some of the competitions at the Confederations Cup Park even offered prizes of tickets to matches this summer.

And for those who were not so lucky, there are still tickets available at FIFA.com/tickets and the FIFA Venue Ticketing Centres in every Host City of the Tournament of Champions.

“I felt the hospitality and friendliness from the moment I stepped off the plane,” said Okocha.

“I’m really impressed with what I saw in Kazan! I even thought for a moment about starting to play football again when I was at the Kazan Arena! I’d really like to perform at this stadium! Alas, my career is behind me, but I’ll be delighted if Nigeria get to play matches here at Russia 2018.

“The champions of each continent are playing at the Confederations Cup, so there’ll be a very high standard of football. There will be supporters from all over the world, but Russia will have the best support. It’s a shame that Nigeria didn’t qualify, so instead I’ll support Cameroon.

“Football has an important place in Russia,” Okocha added.

“I often come across Russians and they’re all interested in football. Nigerian footballers who have played in Russia improved their ability here. And, of course, Russian cooking – your chefs are really great! I’m friends with Igor Yanovsky from when we played together at PSG and he suggested a few Russian dishes to me. I really love borsch!”


Culled from FIFA

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