January 19th, 2009
12:42 PM ET

Real Madrid in for Kaka?

Stay up to date with all the comings and goings in the transfer window with CNN.com's daily wrap of the latest rumors and gossip from Europe's sports pages.

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/01/19/bellamy.gi.jpg caption="City's new man? Craig Bellamy could soon swap Upton Park for Eastlands."]

Kaka, Kaka, Kaka. Everywhere you look it's wall to wall Kaka. His intentions again dominate the papers this weekend as representatives from the Abu Dhabi United Group fly to Milan with their big sack of cash. It is the second time Manchester City's owners have tried to talk the Brazilian's paymasters in to parting company with their prized asset. But with 'unnamed sources' constantly spinning, no one is actually sure what is going on. According to The Times, Kaka is seriously considering the £108 ($161) million offer, mainly because he was shocked that Milan considered selling him.

On the other hand The Observer has taken a different tack. The Rossoneri's fans staged a protest before Milan's victory against Fiorentina, a move which deeply moved him according to the newspaper. But, most interestingly, the paper alleges that the whole saga has been a ruse by Milan's owner, arch political manipulator Silvio Berlusconi. Apparently he has been hyping up a potential transfer – a source close to the Abu Dhabi United Group claimed that the £108 million figure was way off the mark – so that he can curry favor with Milan's fans when Manchester City's bid fails. Cunning.

Meanwhile, City are close to securing a more realistic target. West Ham United striker Craig Bellamy is in Manchester having a medical today, according to Guardian, after going on strike when his current club refused permission for him to speak to anyone else. But a bid of £12 ($17.59) million has convinced the East London club to part company with their troublesome hit man.

Any Kaka deal would obviously leave AC Milan awash with cash and the Italian daily La Gazzetta dello Sport has reported that a number of long term Milan targets would be back on the radar again, including Arsenal's striker Emmanuel Adebayor and Chelsea's bustling midfielder Michael Essien. Apparently both players coule be dislodged from their current employers for £32 ($46.85) million each.

Over in France, L'Equipe is concerning itself with the transfer activity of shock title contenders Bordeaux. Despite the strong Euro making acquisitions from the UK more financially attractive, they have pulled out of a deal for West Ham's French International Julian 'TGV' Faubert as the fee was too high. Instead they will be concentrating on luring Nancy's young striker Issiar Dia. Their most pressing issue, however, is keeping hold of the Yoann 'the new Zidane' Gourcuff. The midfielder is on loan from AC Milan but has turned heads across Europe with some stunning goals and match winning performances.

All of which makes goings on at the usually transfer-crazy Real Madrid seem quite prosaic. The club has been watchfully observing the crazy goings on elsewhere with Marca instead focusing on the resignation of President Ramon Calderon for his involvement in an alleged voting scandal.

But they couldn't keep out of the action for long. The News of the World reported that Madrid tabled a late bid for, you guessed it, Kaka. According to reports, they are willing to match Manchester City's bid, but will offer much less in wages. What will he choose? A relegation dog fight with the second best team in Manchester? Or Champions League football with the biggest club side in the world? Hmm, tough one that....

Where should Kaka go: Manchester or Madrid? Have your say in the Football Fanzone debate.

Posted by ,
Filed under:  Football