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Juninho - Tribute to a Legend

Rating:

"Juninho is God. We have him ... you don't"

• Premier League heroes: Juninho

This banner, pinned up regularly around the Riverside Stadium in the '90s, pretty much summed up the love affair the Teesside faithful enjoyed with the Brazilian boy wonder

The diminutive dreamweaver was the jewel in Bryan Robson's star-studded Boro crown during the mid-1990s, lighting up the Premiership and collecting accolades from all corners of the footballing fraternity.

And The Little Fella (or TLF to us Smoggies) repaid his faith from his adoring public by enjoying three spells at the club, eventually playing a key part in helping Boro lift their first major trophy in 128 years.

As one of the world's most sought after players, his shock decision to shun some of football's major monarchies to join the Riverside Revolution of 1996 endeared him to many, and their faith was compounded by his sublime skills, tireless attitude and his reciprocal love for the fans and the club.

Quite simply, he is the greatest player to pull on the shirt, and the DVD Juninho - Tribute to a Legend is the most definitive guide I've seen to his time on Teesside.

Divided into sections for each era, it gives all the great in-depth action that you'd expect - the delightful dinking finish against Derby in the FA Cup, the shoulder-dropping shimmy against Leicester, the tears at Elland Road, the diving header against Chelsea, the Samba swerve celebration against Arsenal in the Carling Cup semi-final, and then finally lifting the coveted trophy in Cardiff in 2004.

However, it also crams in a stack of off-the-ball snippets including his arrival on Teesside, lengthy interviews, studio appearances on Boro TV, and even his opinion on the tie he wears with his 1997 Coca Cola Cup final suit.

There's also a drunken man-crush homage from bleary-eyed terrace hardmen on the steps of Nelson's Column before the same year's FA Cup final. Praise indeed.

At times the footage is reminiscent of those end-of-season VHS videos and the presence of idents from now-defunct super-sponsor Cellnet should surely have perhaps been dumped on the cutting-room floor but, unless you're a digital anorak, it doesn't really matter.

Juninho - Tribute to a Legend is simply about classic footage of Boro's greatest ever player from Boro's greatest ever era.

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