Former World Player of the Year, Kaka, could never have imagined that a little known midfielder from Empoli would ever be an obstacle in his career path.
But that is exactly what has happened, with Italy Under 21 Riccardo Saponara considered the future playmaker at AC Milan.
Saponara joined the Rossoneri in January, and his presence at the San Siro is one of the factors standing in the way of Kaka’s return to Milan.
The Brazilian struggles for game time at Real Madrid, and would love to play again for the club where he was briefly considered the best player in the world.
But Milan say Saponara is the future.
He is younger and cheaper, and the Rossoneri think he has what it takes wear the number 10 shirt and be their ‘trequartista’ for years to come.
"There are no restrictions on using a trequartista. That change in the team should be a natural evolution and that's why we bought Saponara," Milan’s vice-president, Adriano Galliani explained to legiaserie.it, explaining why Kaka does not feature in the club’s plans.
"Kaka has very high wages and is now 31, so I can rule out any move to Milan."