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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Jul 16, 2008

Ronaldinho to be unveiled at AC Milan

MILAN, July 16 (Serie A) - Ronaldinho will be formally unveiled as an AC Milan player on Thursday evening, the club have confirmed.

The Barcelona star spent Wednesday in Milan undergoing a medical and will now be presented to the Rossoneri fans at 9.30pm on Thursday.

The club posted a statement on their website, saying: 'Ronaldinho will be unveiled tomorrow (Thursday) at the San Siro Stadium at 21.30 to his new fans.

'The entrance will be free for all Rossoneri fans.'

Ronaldinho has always professed his desire to join the Rossoneri and he backed up his words with actions when he renounced his right to 15% of the transfer fee in order to facilitate a move to the San Siro.

Manchester City offered considerably more than the 21 million euros which Milan are prepared to pay, but the Brazilian confirmed he was only interested in joining the San Siro club, with a three-year contract thought to be on the table.

'I can confirm that I strongly wanted to join AC Milan,' he said. 'It's true.

'Many things have happened but in the end I have become a Rossonero player.

'I am happy to find so many Brazilians but also all the champions that wear the Rossoneri colours.'

Now the 28-year-old is determined to rediscover his magic at Milan, after his last campaign in Spain was marred by injuries and poor form at the Nou Camp.

'I am really happy,' said Ronaldinho.'After many years I am here.

'I am delighted to have arrived to AC Milan and I hope to be able to give a lot of joy to everyone.'

Milan showed their commitment to the player by announcing they will allow him to play for Brazil at the Olympics, delaying his debut for the club.

Ronaldinho was included in his country's squad for the tournament as an overage player and had been in a dispute with Barcelona over his desire to play in China. But his new employers do not want to get off on the wrong foot with their new star signing.

'We respect the obligation that he took on before he came to Milan,' said club vice president Adriano Galliani. 'If he had already been a Rossonero, we would not have let him go, but as he is joining us later we will let him go to the Olympics.'

Coach Carlo Ancelotti put a positive spin on allowing the forward to play for his country.

'It is a chance for him to find his fitness,' Ancelotti said. 'When he comes back he will be ready. He will only need to learn his place in our system.'

Earlier, Ronaldinho issued an apology for making the Milan fans wait so long to greet him - a wait which will now go on one day longer.

'I am sorry if I made you wait,' he told Italian sports daily Gazzetta dello Sport. 'But the facts have shown that I always wanted Milan.

'It's not the moment to talk about Barcelona because I want to enjoy this new page in my life.

'I will only say that to Milan I promise a lot of effort, not only my technical skills.'

Ronaldinho joins fellow Brazilians Kaka, Dida, Emerson and Alexandre Pato at the Serie A giants.

And Kaka was delighted at the arrival of his compatriot.

'I'm very happy with the arrival of Ronaldinho, who brings a lot of talent and quality to Milan and who will put us in a position to fight for titles,' he said in a press statement.

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