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November 25, 2005

Pele convinced: Ronaldinho is the best in the world

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Former football king Pele said Ronaldinho is the best player in the world at the moment, drawing comparisons of FIFA's reigning Player of the Year to himself.

"He is the best in the world right now," Pele told the press at a news conference. "Without a doubt, he is the player who gives (Brazilians) the most joy."

Pele, who led Brazil to World Cup titles in 1958, 1962 and 1970, said it was still early to compare Ronaldinho with other great Brazilian players such as Zico, Socrates, Falcao and even Romario. He admitted, however, that there are some things in common between himself and the 25-year-old midfielder.

"I'm proud because he is the top player representing Brazil (internationally)," Pele was quoted by local Radio Jovem Pan. "And I also had this same pleasure, of representing Brazil, and doing it well."

Ronaldinho is one of 30 players and seven Brazilians being considered for this year's FIFA Player of the Year award, which will be announced Dec. 19 in Zurich, Switzerland, reported AP.