Real Madrid’s resurgence back to the top of La Liga has not been great for all involved. Whilst his team were pegging back arch rivals Barcelona in the league, Brazilian midfielder Kaká spent a majority of the season on the sidelines, either struggling to recovery from injury or struggling to get back into the team. It’s been a tough 3 years at the Bernabéu for the former world player of the year since he moved from AC Milan in the summer of 2009. Whilst a stand out star at Milan, where he became a cult figure with the fans, Kaká has been more of a bit player at Madrid, with a majority of his time hindered with injuries and lack of form. It now looks likely that Mourinho will let the attacking midfielder move on so that he can finish his career on a high. The fee is likely to be significantly less than the €68.5 million Madrid paid AC Milan but whoever forks out the cash is likely to pick up one of the bargains of the century.
At only 31 years old, Kaká still has a lot to offer so his services will be in high demand. With clubs across Europe watching with interest, including Bayern Munich and Chelsea, it may surprise a few that the man himself is looking more towards North American than Europe for his next adventure. Following in the footsteps of his friend, David Beckham, Kaká may move to the US where he would instantly become the biggest star in the league. There are a few clubs who have expressed an interest in the player capped 85 times by Brazil, one of which is Beckham’s old club, LA Galaxy. With David now departed, there is space on their roster for another superstar and they have been quick to let Kaká know of their interest. AEG President Tim Leiweke, whose company owns the LA Galaxy spoke recently of their interest.
“We’re well aware of Kaká’s interest in MLS, and we in turn have made it very clear to him that he’s aware of our interest in him. We have a great relationship with Real Madrid, and just as we worked through a player (Beckham) with them six years ago I’m absolutely convinced we could find the right deal this time, too. It’s up to Real Madrid to tell us when they want to engage. But Kaká is a player within their system, and because I am a fan and a partner of Real Madrid, we will absolutely follow their lead on whether or not they want to have this conversation and when they want to have it. In the meantime, I’m not going to go out and do anything that ultimately prevents us from having that conversation”
Kaká has indeed expressed an interest in the MLS but has not been forthcoming about his choice of club. Galaxy may have a task on their hand to convince the player to move to Los Angeles instead of a more likely location, New York. The city that never sleeps appeals to Kaká for several reasons. Firstly the player already owns an apartment in Manhattan and is a frequent visitor to the city, mostly to see his younger brother Digão who plays for New York Red Bulls in defence. Red Bulls would be an obvious choice of club to join as Kaká is close to his family and has dreamed about playing alongside his brother for a long time now after failing to do so whilst the two were at AC Milan together in 2005. New York Red Bulls, which already has a full designated player roster of Thierry Henry, Tim Cahill and Rafael Marquez so would need to make room for the player, with the Mexican defender Marquez likely to be the sacrificial lamb. New York have yet to make a formal approach or even a declaration of their interest but are likely to step up a gear now that Leiweke has gone public. A third option for Kaká, which looks less likely is for him to become the main attraction for a new team introduced into the league next year, likely to be based in New York. The MLS is moving fast on this but with Madrid ready to move the player on, the timing may not be just right for that move to unfold.
With LA in the driving seat, Kaká will need to make a decision quickly. He will be aware of interest from other clubs and is likely to consult with his advisors before any move is decided. Former clubs AC Milan and São Paulo FC are also rumoured to be interested in having Kaká return which may throw a spanner in the works for LA but the club are confident they can convince the player to come. Kaká is the perfect fit for the next piece of the Galaxy jigsaw puzzle as they look to bring in an icon who can attract the lucrative and growing latino hispanic audiences, especially at a time when the league is announcing a dedicated Hispanic channel for next season. Kaká knows that by moving to LA he is guaranteed to play every game (unless injured) as Beckham did and with a slower pace, the Brazilian could recapture his form just in time for the Brazil 2014 World Cup squad selection. As a devout evangelical christian, Kaká believes that God will send him down the right path with his next career move as he has done in the past.
‘I learnt that it is faith that decides whether something will happen or not”
Galaxy will be praying that Kaká ends up in Los Angeles as they are convince he will become a megastar for the team. Regardless of how much the player costs in a transfer fee or how much money they will have to pay him in wages, the club knows that the player will help to recoup their losses with the interest in his participation in the league alone. Kaká has the potential to resurrect his career in the US and remind the football world why he was once the most sought after player on the planet. If he can do this, the US fans may well be asking ” David who?” before the end of the new MLS season.