The 97-time national team footballer, Ballon d’Or winning former world champion made the statement at a press conference on the European Teqball Tour in Budapest on Friday. The tournament, which is also the first qualifying tournament for next year’s European Games in Poland, has attracted 150 participants from 29 countries.
As the star guest of the four-day event in Budapest, Ronaldinho spoke proudly about his relationship with the sport and Hungary, according to a statement from the organizers.
“After all these years, I feel like I’m coming home to Hungary, I can be part of a big family with my brothers and sisters, who practically always accompany me. It’s a great pleasure to see teqball develop year by year, tournament by tournament, and to participate in such a prestigious tournament in the home country of the sport is always a special experience,” he said.
He added that his love for football had not diminished even after he stopped playing it as a competitive sport.
“I’m proud to have been part of the spread of the sport, first in my country Brazil and then throughout the world, and it’s a great feeling to play such a major role in its development. In addition, the international federation is very open to my suggestions and the relationship is smooth. Many of us expect that, thanks to our hard work, teqball will be part of the program at the 2028 Olympics,” he said.
Gábor Borsányi, President of the International Federation (FITEQ) and co-founder of teqball, also highlighted how far the sport has come in its short history.
“The quality of the game has obviously changed a lot, it has become much more spectacular than in the beginning. It is a great pleasure for us to be able to organize such a prestigious tournament in Budapest again thanks to the support of the Hungarian state, and the sport is very popular in Hungary as well,” he said.
He stressed that the international federation already has 147 national federations among its ranks, but the aim is to expand further and thus achieve the inclusion of teqball in the Olympic program in 2028.
Hungary is a country that has football again, said Tamás Menczer, Minister of State for Bilateral Relations of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, at the opening ceremony of the European Teqball Tour in Budapest.
“Our national team is successful, we can see the sold-out stadiums and the celebrating people, and the young people today not only want to be Ronaldinho or Ronaldo, but also Hungarian players are role models, Ádám Szalai, Attila Szalai, Ádám Nagy, András Schäfer and others,” said Tamás Menczer.
The Minister of State noted that Hungarians have a special bond with football, as “we were once among the best in the world and we rightly feel that we have a place at the top”. He added that for thirty years Hungarian football was in “hell”, a generation grew up with almost nothing but defeats and for decades experienced the fear of playing against the weakest teams in the world.
“To experience after all this that we have gone to European Championships and achieved great results against the best teams in the world, or how we have recently won, is quite amazing,” said Tamás Menczer, adding that Hungarian fans are the best, the 12th men to help the team.
Speaking about teqball, Tamás Menczer noted that with its invention, the Hungarians have once again shown what no one else in the world has been able to do.
Via: MTI ; Featured photo: Guo Cheng / Xinhua / Xinhua Via AFP