In the portrait drawn by Vivek, Ronaldinho grins widely, as does his older brother Roberto, who carries him atop of his shoulder. The same smile that has conquered football grounds across the world. A couple of days ago, Vivek posted the portrait, drawn by him, of the footballer with his brother on Instagram. The portrait sketch was on a childhood photo of Ronaldinho.
On Tuesday night, Vivek got a notification on Instagram-of the former Brazilian footballer following him back, making him one among the 364 people that Ronaldinho follows on instagram. Others on the list include Columbian footballer Higuita, Ronaldo.
Vivek PT is a 19-year-old football lover from Chengani near Vengara in Malappuram, the district where almost anyone you meet would be a football fan.
Malappuram is well-known for its love of the sport, it's locally conducted stormy soccer matches and it's crazy ways of embracing the football World Cup every time.
"I fell in love with football seeing Ronaldinho playing," Vivek tells TNM. "Of course being born in Malappuram, I would have naturally become a football buff," he chuckles over the phone.
Asianet news online first published a story of the youth, a student of Fire and Safety Engineering, being followed by Ronaldinho.
Vivek, however is a fan of Lionel Messi and he has earlier drawn portrait sketches of the Argentinian footballer and that of Brazilian player Neymar.
â€śItâ€™s different with Ronaldinho, everything he does is magical. Yes, like thousands of his other fans, I too, love his dribbling. And he is such a humble human being,â€ť says Vivek adding â€śWho doesnâ€™t like him laughing with both arms waving, with mouth wide open and sometimes even dancing on the ground to celebrate a goal he just scored.â€™
Vivek sketched one portrait each of Messi and Neymar while he did two of Ronaldinho. Of this, one is the portrait of the Brazilian footballer being carried by his brother on the top of his shoulder. Vivek would tag the celebrities in the pictures while he posted them on Instagram, alas, only to go unnoticed or not to evoke any response.
The portrait of young Ronaldinho, Vivek posted a couple of days ago, tagging Ronaldinho. To his sheer surprise he got the notification of Ronaldinho following him with a comment â€“Thank You for the art, my friend. Vivek is now flooded with queries mostly from his fellow football buffs in Malappuram and messages on Instagram and Whatsapp. Vivek too played football when he was a school student and is a huge fan of the local soccer matches.