Former Super Eagles skipper, Austin Jay-Jay Okocha, has revealed that Brazilian star Ronaldinho Gaucho emulated his style of play.
Ronaldinho Gaucho played alongside Jay-Jay Okocha at Paris Saint Germain from 2001 till 2003.
The former Barcelona midfielder came in from Gremeio in Brazil and as a 21 year old who’s still finding his feet in Europe he understudied Okocha.
In an interview with Egyptian TV, Jay-Jay Okocha said the then Brazilian youngster learnt a lot from him by copying his dribbles and tricks that he (Okocha) was famous for.
“Ronaldinho tried to imitate some of my skills and dribbles, he was still a young player before I left for England and he joined Barcelona,” Okocha told ‘On time sports’.
Both dazzlers eventually left Paris for greener pastures as Austin signed Bolton Wanderers in the Premier League while Ronaldinho signed for FC Barcelona and also went on to win the world’s best footballer of the year twice.
Cameroon FA president, Samuel Eto’o is of the belief that, despite Jay-Jay’s talent, the Super Eagles midfielder never got the recognition he deserved, while Ronaldinho’s flair has gained him almost mythical status.
“What we saw Ronaldinho do a few years ago, Jay-Jay (Okocha) had done 10 or 15 years before and he never had the recognition of others,” Eto’o said in an interview reported by Onvoitout. “And that’s what happens when it comes to Africa.”