2020 was rather a depressing year not only for sportsmen but also for the fans due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Several sporting events, including the Euro 2020 and the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), were either cancelled or postponed as the pandemic wreaked havoc globally.
However, as all things, good or bad, come to an end, the year 2020 has ended. And, sportspersons across the world have extended their greetings and wishes to begin the year 2021 on a joyous note.
New Year greetings from sportspersons
Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo on Friday extended greetings to his fans on the occasion of New Year and said "may 2021 be a year to always remember for the best reasons".
Ronaldo also acknowledged the impacts that the coronavirus pandemic had on the world but stated that it is time to bounce back and try to turn 2021 into a turning point.
"2020 was not an easy year, there's no doubt about it. No one can be indifferent to the pain and suffering that COVID-19 brought upon the world. But now it's time to bounce back and show that, together, we can make a difference. Because no matter how hard is the fall, what really defines us is the way we get back on our feet and how fast we are ready to face new obstacles," Ronaldo said in a Facebook post while sharing a picture with his girlfriend, Georgina Rodriguez, and kids.
"So let's try to turn 2021 into a turning point, a new beginning, a fresh start. Because all us - and I do mean all of us - can still become better versions of ourselves. And if we do it all together, that might actually be the secret to turn things around for the better. Happy New Year! And may 2021 be a year to always remember for the best reasons!" he added.
"2020 is leaving, a difficult year for everyone. The year we suffered a global pandemic, but despite everything, let's look to the future and be positive. In this 2021 I wish you all good health and a HAPPY NEW YEAR !!!!" Atletico Madrid's Luis Suarez wrote on Twitter (roughly translated from Spanish).
Chelsea's Reece James said it was a "strange" year and thanked everyone who helped others during the challenging times.
"Thank you 2020! This year has been strange in many different ways. COVID restrictions, no fans allowed in stadiums, lockdown. I feel this year has opened our eyes and made us realise how lucky we really are. 2020's COVID pandemic has been unfortunate for all but I believe those that have tried to help in any way they can have made a positive impact in changing people's lives," James said via an Instagram post.
"Our community is coming closer together and we are really trying to help the people that need it most. Thank you to all the wonderful people out there that went above and beyond to help others during this difficult period. Clean hearts always win. I wish you all a very happy ending to 2020, sending you love and positive energy for 2021! Happy new year everyone!" he added.
Chelsea's Kai Havertz tweeted: "A year full of growing and learning. Happy New Year everyone."
Liverpool's Andy Robertson wrote: "Happy New Year guys! Here's to 2021!! It's been a tough and strange year for everyone but I hope you're all safe and well."
His teammate Vigil van Dijk tweeted: "Happy New Year to all of you, hope all your dreams and New Year's resolutions come true in 2021. Let's bring more love, peace, and happiness in the world. Treat people the way you want to be treated, see you soon!"
Barcelona's Sergio Dest said: "It's been a year of many challenges for everyone around the world. Despite the challenging moments, there has been some really positive ones too, and for that I am very grateful. Stay healthy, stay safe, stay positive and have a great 2021. Happy New Year!"
Chelsea player Billy Gilmour wrote: "2020 was a difficult year with a number of challenges to overcome. Thank you for all the support over the last 12 months! Hope to kick on in 2021 and make it a year to remember. Happy New Year!"
Former Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar on Friday extended New Year wishes to fans and penned down the invaluable lesson he learned from 2020.
The 'Little Master' said we must be consciously grateful for things and should not take mother nature for granted.
The legend hoped for a "safer and happier" 2021 and also pointed out that we must value relationships and to keep in touch with our loved ones.
"As we start afresh, hoping for a safer and happier 2021, let's carry forward invaluable lessons from last year: to be consciously grateful for things and not take mother nature for granted. To value relationships and to keep in touch with our loved ones," Tendulkar tweeted.
Former India cricketer and explosive opener Virender Sehwag also wished his "happiness and good health" on New Year while sharing a heartwarming picture with his wife.
"Ram Ram! Wish you a year filled with love, happiness, and good health. May prosperity, strength, and blessings gallore in 2021," Sehwag tweeted.
People across India bid adieu to 2020 and welcomed the New Year 2021 with muted celebrations as night curfew has been imposed in the national capital till January 2 amid the pandemic.
No celebratory events, congregations, and gatherings at public places were permitted and section 144 has been imposed in Bengaluru, Mumbai, and Pune.
But despite the restrictions, people still found a way to make the best of the situation and brought in the New Year by staying indoors and celebrating with family.