Milan Fans: Be Bitter Now, but in Two Years You Can Thank Silvio
Whether the Rossenari's faithful want to believe it or not; selling Kaka today is best for both Kaka and even more so for Milan.
By not selling Kaka to Manchester City as a slave or mercenary for the 100 million or 110 million fee that was being passed around, Milan and all of football should be proud of what has been done by treating him as a human, not a commodity.
With Carlos Ancelloti going to Chelsea and Leonardo now being appointed as coach of Milan, it signals the end of one era and the beginning of a new one.
That being said, Kaka has to go to better Milan and himself.
With injuries niggling him over the past few years, some say he's lost a step. Others believe it's a change of scenery that's needed considering he's won everything during his time.
More than anything, Kaka is settled in very well at Milan. That's why he's stuck around despite the poor 2007-2008 campaign.
But here's a thought.
With rumors of Kaka going to Real Madrid, is there a bigger challenge than Madrid for a player wanting to cement his legacy as one of the greatest? Outside of promoting Leeds United back to the Premier League, I don't think so.
Kaka is following the footsteps of Zidane. Are you gonna fault him for being the next Bernabeau savior wearing No. 5? Don't. Let's all see if Kaka is certainly destined for greatness.
With the 65 million euro sale of Kaka to Real Madrid 99.9 percent complete, it's time Milan start using that money wisely.
Take the 65 million from the Kaka sale, and add it with the 15 million from Galliani's mistaken sale of Gourcouff, and Milan are now sitting pretty on an 80 million euro transfer kitty for this summer.
Kaka's replacement is already in place at Milan so there is no worry for it. It's just time to wake him and remind Ronaldinho who he is and was, and give him the reigns to the Milan offense.
I doubt that Ronaldinho has fallen off that far. With the offense flowing through and around R80, don't be surprised to see Ronaldinho replicate his from for Barcelona circa 2005. Leonardo will push him to get back to optimal fitness and playing ability.
With the playmaker in place, what should the 80 million euros be used for? The backline and forwards are the most pressing needs that come to mind.
Kakha Kaladze, Alessandro Nesta, Gianluca Zambrotta, Giuseppe Favalli, Marek Jankulovski, Daniel Bonera, Luca Antonini, and Thaigo Silva are currently the defenders at Milan with Massimo Oddo coming back from his loan spell at Bayern Munich.
Outside of Thiago, Antonini and Bonera, everyone is at least 30-years-old. Age certainly isn't on their side. Favalli is nearing retirement unless he can pull a Maldini and magically play into his 40's at a high level, while Nesta has the reoccurring back problem that may send him into a retirement.
Backline is clearly their need. With the 80 million, Milan can easily buy three young new defenders. Names that come to mind are, Fabiano Santacroce from Napoli, Simon Kjaer from Palermo, and Phillipe Mexes from Roma; all players who are Serie A battle tested and relatively young.
The midfield with the loss of Kaka is still one with depth, but again age is the issue. Gennaro Gattuso, Clarence Seedorf, Andrea Pirlo, Massimo Ambrosini, and Matteu Flamini are all they have right now with Ronaldinho occupying a CF/CAM type of role.
Outside of Flamini who is 25 and Ronaldinho who's 29, the afforementioned group is another sector of the 30 and over club. Pirlo and Gattuso are injury prone and missed significant time last year with various injuries.
This needs to change with at least one new face coming in. Names coming to mind are Michael Essien to share the role of Gattuso and eventually replace him long term.
A Pirlo for Essien swap is rumored to be in the works, but you have to believe that it will not happen. No offense to Andrea Pirlo, but Michael Essien is the complete midfielder in the world.
The final spot is the strike force. Pippo Inzaghi continues his magnificent run with il Diavolo, so until he fails miserably he shall still have a spot on the squad. Joining him in as forwards is the young Brazilain starlet Alexandre Pato and Marco Borriello.
Borriello missed three-quarters of the season last year due to a severe knee injury, but has recovered nicely and deserves a spot due to his goal prowess as proved during his time at Genoa.
Pato is on the rise to stardom. He scored 14 goals in 33 games last year during Serie A play, in his first full season as a Rossoneri player at the tender age of 19.
With Borriello and Pato's young and best years in front of them, Milan have a good core but their depth is thin.
Names that have been linked to Milan before are Karim Benzema of Lyon, Edin Dzeko of Vfl Wolfsburg, and Emmanuel Adeybayour of Arsenal. All have yet to hit their primes and have a knack for scoring goals.
Now lets look at it from an economic perspective. By selling two players and receiving a combined 80 million euros, if Silvio and Adriano could manage to bring in say Simon Kjaer, Fabiano Santacroce, a midfielder, and Edin Dzeko, would this be better long term?
Face it, with the squad Milan have next year it would have been a repeat of this year. Put up a fight for the Scudetto but ultimately come up short.
New blood needs to be injected into the Milan lineup. With the additions of the four players mentioned before, Milan instantly becomes a favourite to challenge for Serie A not only next year, but for the next three to four years with a solid young core finally being established.
At the end of the day, Milan diehards must understand: You can live without Kaka. This is the same team that sold Andrei Shevchenko and many believed they were doomed. What ensued that season? Champions League glory.
While I'm not saying that something drastic of that nature will happen again, I am saying this: Worse things can happen, but the sun sets and it rises. It's time for a new era and a fresh change at the San Siro.
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