1/17/2009 8:43 AM
If Kaka Moves To Manchester City, Football Is Dead
Kaka seems almost certain to leave Milan for Manchester City. Carlo Garganese believes that if the transfer goes through, it will represent the death of football.
AC Milan are the most internationally successful club in world football, with a prestige, history, class, and honor that most other teams can only dream of. Seventeen Scudetti, seven Champions League titles, three Intercontinental Cups, a never-ending list of past and current legends, including Rivera, Altafini, Baresi, Maldini, Van Basten, Ronaldinho - you could spend all day talking about the magnificent Milan.
Compare the Rossoneri to Manchester City. Two English league titles (in 1937 and 1968), and one European Cup Winners Cup in 1970, and that is pretty much the club’s history. The Citizens have not won a major honour for 40 years, nor have they even challenged, even dropping down to the third tier a decade ago, while their past greats such as Colin Bell and Francis Lee, despite being superb players, are hardly household continental names.
Milan are currently third in Serie A, with a realistic chance of fighting for the Scudetto. The most dominant club in the Champions League this decade, the Rossoneri are almost certain to return to Europe’s premier cup competition next season, and fight to win it. Meanwhile, Manchester City are floundering down in 15th place in the Premier League, just two points above the relegation zone. There is no hope of making the Champions League next season, while their only realistic chance of qualifying for Europe at all, will be to win the UEFA Cup this season.
Milan is one of the most revered cities in Europe, a capital of design and fashion, with culture, art, nightlife, and much, much more. Manchester, meanwhile, located far, far away from the centre of Europe, boasts nothing of cultural note, and hardly catches the eye like Milan, or even London, does.
So how could it be then that one of the world’s greatest footballers could possibly move from the prestigious Milan to the plastic Manchester City?
The simple answer is: money.
The English Premier League, with its billionaire foreign owners, propaganda marketing, and obscene television deals, has already done enough to destroy the splendour and tradition of the beautiful game, and if this Kaka deal passes through, it will be the death of football.
This time, there may be no return.
Some of the financial figures being banded around are quite horrific. Kaka will earn €15m a year after tax, while Milan will reportedly receive a transfer fee in excess of €112 million. What has the world come to?
I must point out before I get floods of complaints from Premier League apologists that I have no grudge against English football. This is purely a moral stance against the direction the Premier League has taken over the past four or five years, specifically since Roman Abramovich entered onto these shores, and helped turn football into a circus.
With the world financial crisis, there was some hope in my mind that football, and the Premier League in particular, may take a step backwards and begin to regain some of its purity and soul, but the imminent Kaka deal emphatically suggests otherwise.
Milan should not escape criticism though. They have been tempted by the devil and, like Adam, they could not resist the juicy-looking apple. The second symbol of Milan, after Paolo Maldini, has been sacrificed for a pot of dirty money. What will the Milan fans at San Siro do tonight to protest? It should make interesting viewing.
Michel Platini is the President of UEFA, and he needs to immediately lay out laws to prevent rich owners from spending what their clubs, as businesses, do not make. Whether this will be possible remains to be seen, and it probably is already too late.
The day the transfer of Kaka to Manchester City goes through will be marked down in history as the day football died.