| 25 September, 2017

Ronaldinho, Giggs, Scholes to arrive in Dubai for Premier Futsal

Ronaldinho, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Hernan Crespo, Deco and Michel Salgado go head to head for Premier Futsal title

Brazilian soccer star Ronaldinho participates in a soccer camp at the Jorge "El Magico" Gonzalez National Stadium in San Salvador, El Salvador, August 8, 2017.

Brazilian soccer star Ronaldinho participates in a soccer camp at the Jorge "El Magico" Gonzalez National Stadium in San Salvador, El Salvador, August 8, 2017.

Reuters/Jose Cabezas
Some of the world's most famous football talent will descend on Dubai this week for the Premier Futsal 2017 finals. The international sporting icons will be representing their teams at the tournament's semifinals and final games which will be hosted at Al Wasl Football Club, Dubai, between from September 26 to 1 October 1, a press release said.

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Brazil's two-time World Player of the Year Ronaldinho, Manchester United legends Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes, legendary Argentina striker Hernan Crespo, former Portugal and Barcelona playmaker Deco and Real Madrid icon Michel Salgado.

Six teams will take part in the Dubai finals. Each side will be captained by an international superstar.

Futsal was founded in Uruguay in 1930. It is played on a smaller pitch, with a smaller ball, contested between teams made up of five players.

The Premier Futsal tournament consists of 40-minute games, split into 10 minute quarters. This is the second tournament hosted by Premier Futsal, having launched in 2016 in India and grossing over 100 million viewers globally, with an overall reach of over 700 million. It is now the most viewed futsal event in the world.

Each Premier Futsal team will also comprise the best futsal players in the world together with home-grown amateur players.

Two-time World Player of the Year and Real Madrid legend, Luis Figo, is the president of Premier Futsal.

The six five-a-side teams - all named after cities in India - that are vying to be crowned the Premier Futsal 2017 champion are:

Dehli Dragons

Dehli Dragons will be captained by one of the most decorated football players of all time - Ronaldinho. The Brazilian won several club, country and personal accolades during his playing career at clubs including Barcelona, Paris St-Germain and AC Milan. Honours include 2005 Ballon d'Or, 2002 World Cup title, the 2006 Uefa Champions League title and the Fifa World Player of the Year awards in 2004 and 2005.

Bengaluru Royals

The Royals are captained by Manchester United legend Paul Scholes. The Englishman spent his entire 20-year footballing career at Manchester United, where he became a cult hero, winning 11 Premier League titles, two Uefa Champions League titles and one Fifa Club World Cup.

Mumbai Warriors

Paul Scholes' former teammate and Manchester United's record appearance holder, Ryan Giggs captains the Mumbai Warriors. Like Scholes, Giggs spent his entire career at Manchester United, where he amassed 672 League appearances, winning 13 Premier League titles, four FA Cups, two Uefa Champions Leagues and one Fifa Club World Cup.

Chennai Singhams

Argentina legend Hernan Crespo will lead the Chennai Singhams, having made over 670 appearances for club and country in a remarkable 19-year career. Crespo made his name in Italy with Parma, before going on to make appearances with some of Europe's top clubs including Inter Milan, Chelsea and AC Milan before re-joining Parma in 2010. The Argentine's honours include; a Premier League title, Uefa Cup, Copa Libertadores and three Serie A titles.

Telugu Tigers

Portuguese favourite Deco captains Telegu Tigers with the playmaker looking to lead the Tigers to a Premier Futsal title. Deco's career saw him represent some of Europe's biggest sides including FC Barcelona, FC Porto and Chelsea, winning some of the most coveted awards in football. The midfield maestro was part of the 2004 FC Porto side who won the 2004 Uefa Champions League, before departing to Barcelona where he won the trophy again in 2006.

Kerala Cobras

Captaining the Kerala Cobras will be Spain and Real Madrid legend Michel Salgado. The Spaniard is a multi-La Liga champion, lifting the trophy in the Galacticos era four times. During his nine-year spell at Los Blancos, Salgado also won two Uefa Champions Leagues, one Uefa Super Cup and three Supercopa de Espana trophies.

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