Nigeria national football team striker Emmanuel Dennis was left excited upon meeting with legendary Brazil international Ronaldinho, who he has idolised from childhood. Dennis, who currently plies his trade alongside Taiwo Awoniyi at Nottingham Forest in the Premier League, is currently on holiday after missing out on the Super Eagles squad for the AFCON qualifiers 2023 match against Sierra Leone.
He was spending his time at a hangout joint with friends and family when he spotted Ronaldinho, who obliged and took a picture with him. Dennis shared the image to his social media, crediting the legendary player for his career.
“The reason I play football today,” Dennis pays tribute to Ronaldinho
Emmanuel Dennis has not had the best of years but he is currently enjoying a much needed break after ten months of gruelling training, dieting, fitness checkups and matchday preparations.
He survived another relegation scare thanks to the performances of his teammates, especially Awoniyi, who earned a spot in the latest Nigeria Super Eagles squad on the back of his performances in the closing stages of the 2022/23 season.
Dennis is now close to playing his third Premier League season since moving from Belgian Jupiler Pro League side Club Brugge to Watford in 2021. The Yola-born striker joined the Hornets and showed enough promise to warrant a number of Premier League side's interest in him.
Forest would sign him but he would play a bit-part role as they battled relegation and won in their first season back in the top flight in more than two decades. As the club's management begin to prepare for a new season, starting with the transfer window, Dennis, whose fate at City Ground is unknown, is currently taking time off to recalibrate. His meeting with Ronaldinho was on one of his holiday activities and he did not hesitate to share a moment with the Brazil football icon.
He posted that moment to his Twitter page with the caption, “Meet the reason why I’m a football player today, the real GOAT. I’m speechless.”
Meet the reason why I’m a football player today, the real GOAT 🐐 I’m speechless ❤️😳 pic.twitter.com/tUnYooQBNr
— DENNIS BLESSED (@dennisblessed42) June 18, 2023
Emmanuel Dennis at Nottingham Forest
Dennis has gone from playing a major role at Watford to becoming an also-ran at Forest. The 25-year-old struggled with minor fitness issues but was only considered for 19 of the club's 38 games in the 2022/23 league season. He did not get a full 90 minutes in those games and only started a handful of them.
He only played five games where he lasted for 70 minutes or more, with the most minutes being 79. He scored two goals and provided two assists in the league, with both goals coming against Aston Villa and Newcastle United respectively. Both goals were the only goals scored by Forest in the said games. Thanks to his versatility, he was used in a variety of positions in the 2022/23 season including left midfield, left wing, striker attacking midfield and right wing.
Forest are planning a clearout, having signed the most number of players in transfer window history in 2022/23. Dennis is reportedly on the list of players to be offloaded. British tabloid The Telegraph reports that alongside Jonjo Shelvey, Remo Freuler, Sam Surridge and Steve Cook, he could be sold in the summer. There are no clubs linked to him in the transfer news and rumour mills, however.
This article was most recently revised and updated 3 months ago