Carlo Ancelotti has already begun his work trying to win La Decima and La Liga back from bitter rivals Barcelona with many signings so far: Carjaval from Leverkusen, Isco from Malaga and Asier Illarramendi from Real Sociedad.
Despite that, Ancelotti is well known and very close to one of Madrid’s’ failing galacticos Riccardo Kaka’, the Brazilian midfielder. It’s a conundrum for Madrid’s new boss as he embarks on his 1st season in charge at the Bernabeu and will be under instant pressure to de-throne Barcelona and even more so win that elusive 10th European Cup.
Kaka moved to the Bernabeu from Milan on the 8th of June 2009 for a whopping €70m deal ending a magnificent 6 year spell at the San Siro winning several honours;
- Serie A: 2003–04
- Supercoppa Italiana: 2004
- UEFA Champions League: 2006–07
- UEFA Super Cup: 2007
- FIFA Club World Cup: 2007
Adding to this under Ancelotti, he replaced Portuguese legend Rui Costa in Milan’s starting eleven. He also was a firm favourite of the Milan faithful, who were not too happy later on, when they let their prize asset move to Madrid.
That summer was an exciting one for Los Merengues. Cristiano Ronaldo moved from Man Utd, as the club broke the world transfer record twice in the one summer signing two superstars. For Kaka’, the transition was not as seamless as that for Ronaldo. He underwent surgery on a long standing knee injury after a decent start at the club, which put him out for the majority of Pellegrini’s season in charge.
Then Madrid got rid of Pellegrini and brought in highly controversial manager Jose Mourinho. Along with him in came Mou’s own number 10, Mesut Ozil from Werder Bremen. The young Turkish-born German broke into the side playing behind the striker and never looked back becoming one of the most important players under Mourinho in his tenure. Kaka’ again struggled with injury after injury and definitely struggled to regain a starting place due to the outstanding form of Ozil, it was noticeable that his body is feeling the effects of these injuries as he’s lost some of his pace. At times under Mourinho he would show flashes of the Milan Kaka’, but not enough to convince Mourinho that he was back to his old self.
Now with Mourinho gone back to Chelsea and Ancelotti installed as head coach, this could be the last chance for the world cup winner to kick-start his career and prove he is worth the €70m that Perez paid Milan for his services. Both Manager and President remain big fans of the player.
Ancelotti told Marca : “I want to give him an opportunity because I consider him a useful player, with ambition.”
Meanwhile Perez told sky sports:
“Kaka is a phenomenon, but he got injured in the last World Cup and had to have an operation on his knee.
“Then [Mesut] Ozil arrived and took his place in the team from him, but he is still one of the greats of the game. He is the second most followed footballer on Twitter, after Cristiano Ronaldo.
“He is charming and excites the fans. I’m optimistic that, under Ancelotti, who knows him very well, he can be the same magical Kaka again that we signed.”
Now this is the former world player of the year’s chance to make himself undroppable and a key part of the side. There is no doubt the ability is there. He may have lost some pace and confidence under previous coaches, yet with a clean slate and a manager who knows him so well and believes in him, we may just see the Milan that dawned the San Siro many moons ago. If he can produce, he may just find himself in the Brazil World Cup squad at the seasons end.