Kaka Looks Foward To "Beautiful" Game Against Arsenal
Playmaker Kaka is looking forward to a “beautiful game” when his AC Milan side clash with Arsenal in the Champions League.
The contest pits the Milanese old guard against Arsene Wenger’s young guns. Kaka, whose real name is Ricardo Izecson dos Santos Leite, recognises that Arsenal will offer a stern test of Milan’s credentials. Nevertheless, he backs the Rossoneri to dump the English side out of the competition and add to the club’s seven European triumphs.
"People have called this tie against Arsenal a match between an ageing team and a new young, up-and-coming side,” the reigning Fifa world player of the year said. “It is a fair comparison, because the average age in the first team here in Milan is 32, but that doesn't mean we'll struggle against them. Experience counts for everything at this stage of the Champions League.”
“This is a game we can enjoy. It can be beautiful.”
Despite Milan’s determination to succeed, Kaka does not underestimate the threat posed by Wenger’s team. Arsenal enjoy a five point lead in the Premiership over closest rivals Manchester United. However, the Gunners crashed out of the English FA Cup 4 –0 last Saturday against United. Many observers believe the Gunners boss decision not to play his strongest team showed that he had given priority to the match against the 2007 Champions League winners.
"This tie against Arsenal will be open and more interesting than if Milan had been drawn against Liverpool or Chelsea, teams that play more in the traditional English style," Kaka conceded. “They play football the way we like it to see it in Brazil, with style, changing position all the time, moving the ball among themselves so quickly.
“They have won Premier League titles, they were in the Champions League final a few years ago and they have real quality."
Wednesday’s Champions League match is seen as crucial to the Milan team which has not hit its best form this season and lies 21 points behind city rivals Internazionale in Serie A. Kaka sees the Champions League game as a chance for Milan to ignite their season.
"We were inconsistent in the first half of the season," said Kaka. "But we have recovered since the turn of the year and have lost only once in Italy since then, even if the top is still a long way off.
“That means the Champions League is the most important competition we're in - win that and your names are etched down in history, far more so than if you win the domestic league. We are too far behind in Serie A, so the priority is completely to win the Champions League again."