So it’s all off then, Kaka has shunned the millions on offer to switch the San Siro for Eastlands, turned his back on an alleged £500,000 a week ( A measly take home salary of £260,000 per week after tax) and declared his love for AC Milan. Am I surprised? A little bit, but it’s certainly reaffirmed a bit of faith for me in footballers when someone can turn down astronomical wages to stay where they are. I thought that even a deeply religious man as Kaka is, would have his head turned by Manchester City’s overtures toward him but it was not to be. Manchester City are now beginning to realise the scale of the task ahead of them to attract anyone of any real quality to join them. Sure Wayne Bridge is an accomplished player, but one of the best 10 left backs in the world? No. Is Craig Bellamy, 29 years old and on his 8th club already, a man who could start an argument in a graveyard, one of the top 50 strikers in the world today? No he’s not. If Nigel De Jong was as good as they think he is, he wouldn’t be with SV Hamburg. Apologies to Hamburg fans and your fantastic manager.
It finally proves that to some players money isn’t everything. Whilst I appreciate the fact he’s on a fair whack at Milano, around £150,000 a week, Kaka realises the scale of the job ahead of Manchester City’s owners to attract anyone to join them at Eastlands. Are they going to play European football next season? It looks a major long shot at this point with only two routes open to them, winning the UEFA Cup or applying to join through the Intertoto Cup and at the moment both look well out of City’s reach. We are now beginning to see the calibre of players who will go to City and the ones who will not, Robinho, Bellamy, Bridge, Jo. It’s long way from Kaka, Messi, Aguero and Ribery. The owners will be stunned I suspect that for some people money is not everything, to build the highest building in the world, only for the people to declare how ugly it is.
I think the owners bought the club and assumed that money would bring everyone there. They’re now beginning to realise it’s not the case. City, traditionally one of Britain’s best supported clubs, are not a European household name, haven’t won a trophy in 40 years and were in the third tier of English football as recently as 1999. They cannot offer a history of success, as Manchester United, Liverpool and even Arsenal and Chelsea in recent years can do. When you bring European sides into the mix, the lure of the lush warmer climes of Spain and Italy, history and passion go against them as well. If they can’t match sides in England, what about Barcelona, Internazionale, Real Madrid, AC Milan, Juventus, Bayern Munich, even Lyon. Nationallocation goes against them too as their two successful near neighbours can offer Champions League football, well balanced squads and and a winning ethic. Big players want the chance to win big trophies and Manchester City simply cannot do that, instead of trying to build a Mancunian Barcelona, they should look back in recent history and use Blackburn’s template to try and get to the top in England first. Then perhaps they can look to higher quality signings once they become a top 6 side.
Unfortunately, it seems that to compound the issues with Kaka, Robinho has walked out of the Manchester City training camp in Tenerife, apparently due to a disagreement over being allowed to have his birthday in Brazil. City have not given a reason for him leaving the camp as yet and one of the local English speaking Tenerife Radio station, Oasis FM (now that is ironic) are currently running a “Have you seen Robinho” phone in competition this morning. For Manchester City fans, they hope someone spots him soon.