Life & Style

Why football icon Ronaldinho ‘follows’ this Kerala teenager on Instagram

Vivek’s pencil sketch of a young Ronaldinho   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Vivek P T follows many celebrities and sports stars on Instagram, but the 19-year-old soccer buff from Malappuram in Kerala now has a “special” follower. A month ago, Vivek, who regularly posts his artworks on social media, put up a pencil portrait of Brazilian football icon Ronaldinho from his playing days.

Vivek PT showing his sketches of football star Ronaldinho

Vivek PT showing his sketches of football star Ronaldinho   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

The young artist later followed it up with another delightful work that shows a young and smiling Ronaldinho on the shoulders of his elder brother and former footballer Roberto Moreira. It was all a usual practice for Vivek, until one night he received notifications on his phone just as he was about to hit the sack. It so turned that the football icon himself had liked, commented and started following Vivek on Instagram.

Greatest surprise

“Initially, I obviously thought it must have been from some fake Instagram account. But I was flabbergasted to discover that the response was indeed from Ronaldinho’s official verified handle. It was the greatest surprise of my life!” says Vivek, a Safety and Fire Engineering student. The comment read “Thank you for the art my friend”.

Screenshot showing Ronaldinho’s comment

Screenshot showing Ronaldinho’s comment   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Vivek says with a chuckle that some of his friends initially refused to believe it until they verified its veracity themselves. He is surprised how the artwork reached the sportsman. “After posting the sketches on my Instagram page, I shared them with many friends and relatives as Ronaldinho is one of my two favourite football players along with (Lionel) Messi. Some of my football-loving friends are part of several online sports platforms and groups. I guess the artworks must have been shared so,” says Vivek. He did the Ronaldinho sketches during the lockdown period. In fact, the Brazilian star himself had visited Kerala in 2016 to a rapturous welcome after being named as the brand ambassador of the Sait Nagjee Football Tournament in Kozhikode.

Malappuram is known for its love for the beautiful game and Vivek, who supports Argentina and Barcelona on the world stage, also loves to play soccer though he admits that he has not really been able to kick the ball since the pandemic. Vivek, who likes to draw portraits of celebrities, has also posted sketches of his football icon Messi. Though he works with watercolour occasionally, Vivek says his forte is pencil art.

Check out Vivek's artworks on his Instagram page @__v__p__t__

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Printable version | Oct 28, 2020 9:10:46 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/football-icon-ronaldinho-follows-this-kerala-teenager-on-instagram/article32285160.ece

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