Ronaldinho was the highlight of the game in Goa's enthralling 7-2 rampage victory over Bengaluru in Game 7 of the 2016 Indian Premier Futsal League on Sunday.
The former Brazil international netted a stunning five goals to lead his side past their despondent opponents with a classy performance throughout.
In the day's other match, Falcao's Chennai were forced to settle for a share of the points against Kochi after a late collapse saw them end the clash with the scoreline locked at 4-4.
Confirmation of Sunday's results, the updated standings and a recap of the day's action follow.
|2016 Indian Premier Futsal League Sunday's Results|
|Goa 5s||7-2||Bengaluru 5s|
|Chennai 5s||4-4||Kochi 5s|
|2016 Indian Premier Futsal League Standings|
Five-Star Showing from Ronaldinho
Ronaldinho stunned Bengaluru with a magnificent solo performance in Goa's emphatic win. The result marked their first victory of the competition, as the former Barcelona playmaker got the better of opposing marquee player Paul Scholes.
Per Sportskeeda's Nishanth, the tie marked the midfield pair's first reunion since the 2008 UEFA Champions League semi-final between Manchester United and Barca. This time it was Ronaldinho's turn to take centre stage and propel his team-mates to maximum points.
Showboating from the first whistle, the ex-Paris Saint-Germain forward opened the scoring after six minutes, before Bengaluru fought back with two goals to take the lead with 15 minutes on the clock.
However, falling behind was the catalyst Goa needed to kick-start their display, and the precocious talent began to show his true form. Two further goals, including a delightful chip, put Goa in control. As the referee blew for the second break of the game, their grasp on the fixture tightened.
Scholes was unable to affect the game like he did in Bengaluru's Day 2 draw with Kolkata, but he still succeeded in embarrassing an opponent with a nutmeg during the second period.
After a quiet third quarter with little goalmouth action for either side, Goa picked up the tempo toward the end of the contest to run away from Bengaluru.
Video Deportes provided footage of Ronaldinho in action:
#Video @10Ronaldinho Fantastic Skill and Nutmeg India #PremierFutsal #Ronaldinho https://t.co/HNHfYKmleC #NaamHaiFutsal @sport @globoesporte2016-7-17 15:25:13
Ronaldinho and Fredsan Marshall scored within 60 seconds of each other to give Octavio Gomes De Oliveira Junior's side a 5-2 advantage with seven minutes left to play. Rafael struck at the death, and there was still time for Ronaldinho to miss a penalty and score again before time ran out.
The 2004 World Player of the Year was a key protagonist from the initial whistle and produced arguably the performance of the tournament to score an impressive five times.
The official Twitter account of the 2016 IPFL posted a brief recap of the tie, focusing their attention on the tricky attacker:
Premier Futsal @PremierFutsalHQ
Full time, and the game ends with a 7-2 scoreline with @10Ronaldinho scoring 5 of them. FIVE. #NaamHaiFutsal https://t.co/5KcyczJC6V2016-7-17 14:33:51
Late Collapse Stalls Chennai Hopes
In the day's later action, Chennai were unable to topple Kochi at home to open their account for the competition. Led by futsal legend Falcao, Chennai looked strong from the first whistle against Michel Salgado's troops.
However, against the run of play Kochi took the lead. Deives Moraes broke the deadlock in the sixth minute with a thunderbolt from long range. It didn't take long for the hosts to recover, though, and Falcao netted his first of the match soon after.
They moved into the lead for the first time two minutes later, but showboating would soon cause Falcao serious problems. The Brazilian was dispossessed inside his own half, as Kochi scored an equaliser. The back-and-forth nature of the contest continued, and as the second half was brought to a close, Chennai were enjoying a 3-2 lead.
Kochi goalkeeper Carlos Espindola was in inspired form between the sticks to prevent the preying strikers. He tipped a powerful effort onto the post, before Falcao drove home his third goal of the game to put Chennai in control.
But they were unable to hold on for maximum points, as a late meltdown at the back saw Kochi claw two goals back in the final period of the match.
With seven minutes to play, Kochi closed the difference to just one after scoring from the penalty spot before the Brazilian Chaguinha stole a share of the spoils with his second of the game. Salgado's side were in the ascendancy as the final whistle loomed, but neither side was able to grab a decisive fifth.
Premier Futsal commented immediately after the match ended:
Premier Futsal @PremierFutsalHQ
Full time! The match between Kochi 5s and Chennai 5s ends in a 4-4 draw! What an entertaining night of futsal! #NaamHaiFutsal2016-7-17 15:51:39
Chennai now face a significant challenge if they are to progress through the group stage following their late lapse. Falcao produced another impressive performance and was at the hub of all the good attacking moves. Unfortunately for the Brazil icon, his team-mates were unable to match his levels and must now improve if they are to move on in this year's tournament.