Of all the great players in the modern era, if one has to single out an individual whose career is the best example of the clichéd term used in football -‘falling-from-grace’- it has to be of the great Brazilian Kaka’s.
Back in 2009, Kaka was one of the hottest properties of Europe, when Real Madrid president Florentino Pérez signed him for a reported fee of £56 million on a six-year-contract.
However, with just 29 goals in his four seasons at the Madrid club, Kaka has failed to replicate his glorious form, that made him a world beater at AC Milan. It seems like his future is all but over at the Santiago Bernabeu after failing to make any significant impression last season, and further the Los Blancos buying Isco in the summer – a prodigiously gifted midfielder, who plays in the similar position of Kaka.
However, the man who bought him at the first place at Madrid feels Kaka has still lot to offer, as he describes the 31-year-old as “phenomenal”.
Perez highlights the difficult circumstances Kaka has gone through but has kept high-hopes that the Brazilian will regain his midas-touch under his former mentor, Carlo Ancelotti.
“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.”
It is really frustrating to see a world-class player like Kaka struggling to regain his lost form. At times, he has shown flashes of brilliance, most notably in 2011-12, where he scored eight goals and bagged 14 assists, but over-all poetic touches eluded him for major part of his Madrid career.
Madrid have an avalanche of players in the attacking midfield role which could force Kaka to drop further down the pecking orders. Perez is optimistic about a rejuvenation of the former Ballon d’Or and FIFA World Player of the Year award; but, the doubt still lingers – will Kaka ever get back to his old best?