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Football: Brazilian club Fluminense revel in former Real star Marcelo's homecoming

Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), March 10 (IANS) Fluminense manager Fernando Diniz says he expects new signing Marcelo to enjoy himself in his second spell with the Rio de Janeiro club.

Former Brazil national team star Marcelo received a hero’s welcome upon his arrival at Rio’s international airport on Thursday, with hundreds of fans waiting at the arrivals gate to greet the 34-year-old.

Diniz said fans and Fluminense’s players were equally excited about the prospect of seeing the left-back in a Fluminense shirt, reports news agency Xinhua.

“The fans have been very enthusiastic about the fact he is coming,” Diniz told Sportv. “I told him that Fluminense isn’t Real Madrid. We don’t have Cristiano Ronaldo or Benzema, but he is going to have teammates that are very supportive so that he can enjoy his football.”

Marcelo agreed to a contract that runs until December with the option of a 12-month extension after parting ways with Olympiacos in February.

The defender played just 332 minutes in 10 games across all competitions for the Greek club following his September move from Real Madrid.

Capped 58 times for Brazil, Marcelo began his professional career at Fluminense in 2005 and made 30 first-team appearances for the club before joining Real Madrid in 2007.

He played 546 games for the Spanish giants, winning five UEFA Champions League trophies and six La Liga titles, among a host of other accolades.

“Marcelo is one of the players that I’ve most enjoyed watching over the last 15 years,” Diniz said.

“It makes me very happy to have him in our team. I’ve spoken a lot with him. If he is coming with the enthusiasm that he has, there’s a big chance that it’s going to be a successful move. He has qualities that I admire and we’re going to help him as much as we can so that he can be at his best,” Diniz added.



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