Loyalty is such a rare thing these days that when you witness it, you are still sure that there’s much more to it than meets the eye. Such cynicism, however, hasn’t bothered Brazilian midfielder Ricardo Izecson dos Santos Leite a.k.a. Kaká in any way. He still maintains that despite the world record offer of £108 million made by English club Manchester City to have him on board, he’s staying put with his club since 2003, AC Milan. The fact that such a humungous amount of cash has not swayed the player who is arguably the best footballer in the world today leaves most of us stumped. This is partly because we live in a culture where money has become the only objective yardstick for judging quality. So even if a bottle of wine is actually plonk but is sold for a few thousand rupees, the bouquet ‘will be made’ to be of a finer quality in most minds than cheaper wine that is better.
But the fact of the matter is that it wasn’t only up to Kaká to decide whether he would switch teams or not. AC Milan, whose president, former Italian President runs the powerful organisation-club like a country, had reportedly asked Kaká’s suitors in Manchester City to cough up a ludicrous £200 million — in effect saying, “Sod off! We’re not selling our best player.” Although some analysts point out that Milan was willing to let go of Kaká, but for a price.
Whatever one makes of football economics, we would like to think in our idealistic little corner that Kaká’s point — “I don’t want anything else. I just want to be well and happy in the place where people love me — was true, if not the only truth that made the great footballer stay with AC Milan. Our cheap No 22 Milan T-shirts are waving in his honour.