The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Ronaldinho plots Milan conquest

Washington: New signing Ronaldinho scored one goal and set up the other to guide Barcelona to a 2-0 victory over European champions AC Milan in a pre-season friendly on Wednesday.

The Spanish giants went ahead after 10 minutes when a deft flick by Brazilian Ronaldinho set up Barcelona’s new Portuguese winger Ricardo Quaresma, who left Alessandro Nesta and Paolo Maldini flat-footed before firing past the helpless Dida in goal.

Barcelona added a second goal five minutes into the second half after Milan, warming up for the Italian Super Cup against Juventus in New Jersey on Sunday, made 10 substitutions at half-time.

Ronaldinho, who joined the club from Paris St Germain earlier this month, volleyed the ball home from 25 metres thanks to a wicked deflection off fellow-countryman Roque Junior.

Barcelona’s new coach Frank Rijkaard was pleased to defeat the team with which he won two European Cups as a player and was full of praise for Ronaldinho, who made his debut against Juventus in Foxboro, Massachusetts, last Sunday.

“When he (Ronaldinho) touches the ball, something happens. He has some fantastic passes and movement,” Dutchman Rijkaard told newsmen.

“An example of that was the first goal, which was finished beautifully. He is very instinctive, especially when we are in possession.”

Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti also described Ronaldinho as “one of the best players around”.

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