Ronaldinho was born on March 21, 1980 at Porto Alegre, Rio Grande do Sul. His father was a former footballer who worked in the shipyard dock. Football was in his family, as his elder brother Roberto was a very good footballer himself. His elder brother was selected to the football club Gremio at a young age but had to put an end to his promising career because of a serious injury.
Ronaldinho was inspired by his brother and began taking football seriously at the age of 7 itself. He started off by participating in the local beach football and futsal matches regularly. He was soon part of the Brazilian U-17 World Cup team where he impressed by scoring two stunning goals of penalty kicks. This helped him get selected for the Gremio youth squad in 1997. The very next year he was given the chance to make his senior debut against Copa Libertadores. He soon became an integral member of the team and was their star striker till he was transferred to Paris Saint-Germain in 2001 for €5 million.