Uruguayan World Cup star Diego Forlan was on Friday accorded a warm welcome by the people of football-crazy Kolkata when he arrived on a three-day trip.
A huge crowd gathered at the NSCBI airport to have a glimpse of the 2010 World Cup Golden Ball winner, who wore a T-shirt with his name 'DIEGO' written along with the name of the television reality show that has brought him to Kolkata.
The 31-year-old's supermodel girlfriend Zaira Nara, however, did not accompany him.
"He has come here after travelling all the way for over 24 hours from Uruguay, Montevideo to Sao Paulo, Johannesburg and Dubai. He wants to take a full day's rest as there is no appointment scheduled today," an organiser of the TV reality show said.
"There will be a media interaction tomorrow and on August 1 he will be at the Yuba Bharati Krirangan, where he will witness a football match as part of the reality show," he said.
Fans of the Latin American star will get a chance to see him at YBK on August 1 where there will be a match between Challenger XI and Mohun Bagan XI.
"Forlan will be present at the event to cheer the Challenger XI team, led by captain Dipyendu Biswas. The team has been trained rigorously and professionally by Brazillian great Branco. It is on the sets of this reality show that Brazilian footballer Branco will meet World Cup superstar Forlan," said the organisers.
Forlan played a key role in Uruguay's fourth place finish in the World Cup in South Africa. He scored five goals in the tournament.
He joins a host of football icons who have come to Kolkata in the last three years. They include Lothar Matthaus, Karl Heinz Rumminege, Diego
Maradona, Branco, Romario, Oliver Kahn, Gerd Mueller, Mark van Bommel and Ze Roberto.