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Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain star Ronaldinho greeted by huge football fan Pope Francis at the Vatican

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Ronaldinho was widely considered a footballing deity during his playing days with Paris Saint-Germain and Barcelona, but he was in the company of a stronger religious presence this week.

The 2002 World Cup winner with Brazil met Pope Francis at the Vatican on Wednesday, who is renowned as being a huge football fan.

Ronaldinho greeted the Pontiff during a meeting with the Scholas Occurrentes, an educational organisation founded by the Pope.

Former Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain attacker Ronaldinho met the Pope this week

Ronaldinho looked humbled to meet the Pontiff, who is renowned as being a big football fan

Ronaldinho greeted him at a  Scholas Occurrentes meet, an educational organisation founded by the Pope

But the 35-year-old Ronaldinho is not the first big name in football who the Pope has been seen rubbing shoulders with.

The Argentinian, who is a known San Lorenzo supporter, has previously met with European heavyweights Bayern Munich and Juventus.

He met the German side in October 2014 and was presented with a Bayern home shirt, which had his name and the number 1 on the back.

Philipp Lahm and Manuel Neuer handed him the strip in a frame, only a few months after they lifted the World Cup with Germany in Ronaldinho’s home country.

The Pope met Bayern Munich's World Cup winners Philipp Lahm (left) and Manuel Neuer in October 2014

A year before, his fellow Argentinian Carlos Tevez, who presented him with a signed Juventus shirt

A year earlier, Pope Francis met his fellow countryman and former Manchester City and United striker Carlos Tevez.

He was playing for Juventus at the time, and gave the Pontiff a signed Juventus shirt with ‘Tevez 10’ on the back.