When a club legend decides to move on, it is understandably a difficult time for supporters knowing that they will no longer witness his brilliance on the pitch. It is undoubtedly a shame that Kaka has worn the Milan jersey for the last time, but the Rossoneri should consider the mutual termination of his contract as an opportunity rather than a disappointment.
Having rejoined the club last year to much fanfare, the Brazilian provided a significant boost both on and off the pitch with his ability and influence on the squad. The 32-year-old will embark on a new challenge with new MLS side Orlando City following a short stint back at Sao Paulo, and he leaves with the club's blessing after great years of service.
As expected, Kaka was unable to reach the heights of his first spell in Italy, but with nine goals and eight assists in 37 appearances last season, he will consider it a success on a personal level even though he was unable to inspire the team as a whole to a better campaign.
After missing out on the World Cup squad for Brazil, speculation emerged that there was a possibility that he could leave this summer, but on the basis of his performances, it is arguably the right move for both parties given that there were signs that he was suffering from certain limitations in his advanced years.
From a financial perspective, it also allows Milan more flexibility in signing players this summer as they continue to trim the squad. However, it is important to remember the impact Kaka would undoubtedly have had on the players, with many publicly conceding that he was their idol.
Nevertheless, that is clearly not enough to keep an individual at the club, and his departure opens up space for younger options to come in and provide a long-term solution, with coach Pippo Inzaghi seemingly giving the impression that he is ready to make changes where necessary.
While there is still time for the situation to change depending on what signings the club makes in the coming months, the likes of Stephan El Shaarawy and Riccardo Saponara will relish the opportunity to feature more regularly, and it seems as though Milan supporters will see change in the upcoming campaign.
Whether that is positive or negative for the club remains to be seen, but it is reassuring to know that Inzaghi has clear ideas of what he wants from this squad and he isn't afraid to make difficult choices so early in his tenure.
Kaka's departure is certainly a sad moment, but having reached 300 matches wearing the shirt and scoring 100 goals for the club, ultimately his dream came true after returning to his second home and he will forever be fondly remembered for what he contributed.
However, the timing is right for both Kaka and Milan to move forward, and while he leaves with the best wishes of his former teammates and coaches, this could well be a significant point in the evolution of the Rossoneri under their new coach due to the message that is potentially being sent to the players.
Was it the right time for Kaka to leave Milan? Did he still have much to offer or was it time for change?
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