Brazilian soccer star Ronaldo angered a number of his fans who do not support the state of Israel. He was in Jerusalem last week for a World Cup qualifying match when he posted a photo of him and his teammates on his Facebook page with the caption, “Great morning in Israel with my colleagues.”
The post was greeted with a flood of heated responses from anti-Israel fans insisting that it is Palestine, not Israel. One response read, “This land of Palestine is not Israel understand.” There were also a number of posts in support of Israel both in English and Hebrew with one by David Daniel stating in Hebrew, “In the Holy Land!” which had 172 likes.
As of Friday morning, March 22, Ronaldo’s post had more than 290,000 likes and more than 9,000 shares. In the comments section, there was a political back and forth between Israeli and Arab fans.
There were also a couple of trolls posting in praise of Hitler, with one writing, “Long live Hitler this land of Palestine is not Israel.” The post received 4 likes.
There were also a few posts that referenced the 1973 Yom Kippur War, which some Arabs view as a victory, leading one Arab to write, “egypt 1973 palestiiiiiiiiine 2014.” One Israeli response read, “to remind you how 73 war ended? we won.”
Ronaldo – whose full name is Ronaldo LuísNazário de Lima – has played for Brazil in 98 international matches, scoring 62 goals. He was a part of the Brazilian squad that won the 1994and 2002World Cups.Popularly dubbed “the phenomenon,”the 36-year-old is considered by experts and fans as one of the greatest soccer players of all time.