The Kaka Saga
Earlier this month, Kaka underwent a keyhole surgery at Antwerp’s AZ Monica hospital under Dr.Marc Martens in order to cure a lesion in his meniscus in his left knee that he had been struggling with for some time. The arthroscopic surgery was a success and confirmed an injury to the left meniscus with minimal inflammation of the cartilage ergo ruling Brazilian play-maker out for up to four months of action, which meant that he would not only sit out majority of the Primera Division fixtures but also the whole of the UEFA Champions League group phase.
However, there was some consolation for both the player and the club as it was also revealed that, the groin strain (the famous sports hernia) from which Kaka has been suffering, and which hampered his first season with the team, had shown “clear signs of improvement”.
The whole saga was then ignited by the player himself who revealed that he played through the World Cup carrying this injury of his. With Kaka’s doctor labeling the injury “career threatening” and voicing his concern that the 28-year-old was pushing himself too hard, the speculation that Kaka put his career at risk by playing at the World Cup started cropping up. The playmaker was quick to react though and insisted that he never realised the severity of the problem. He told the Spanish press:
This knee has been bothering me for quite some time. But I didn’t know that it was so serious. I was the first to be surprised. I was always being treated for a groin strain and I was told that it could cause muscular imbalance in other parts, but I didn’t know it was so serious.
He also rejected suggestions that he put his career at risk by playing at the World Cup and that he does not believe the injury was ever as bad as Martens has described. Speaking of Martens, Kaka said that Martens is a great professional but that when he raised the alarm, he exaggerated a lot.
There are two sides to this issue. First, from Kaka’s POV, it is fair to say that his participation in the World Cup despite the injury concern is completely justified. With football becoming the game for the young, this was probably Kaka’s last chance to play the grandest tournament of all. Also, his constant injury worry might mean that he might not be even playing football come the next World Cup.
The other side of the coin would be from Real Madrid’s viewpoint. Kaka is no small investment. Florentino Perez spent nearly a fortune in acquiring Kaka’s services from AC Milan last season. Kaka was his first signing and cost him $60 million. On a moral perspective, was it fair for Kaka to play despite carrying such a so-called “career threatening” injury? Kaka’s first season was definitely a flop by the standards the player himself has set. With him being ruled out for almost half of the upcoming season, is it fair for the player to put himself ahead of his team this way? Isn’t it his responsibility to return the amount invested in him by doing what is expected out of him – play.
But then again, you’ve got to love the Kaka. Real invested in him knowing that the Kaka Milan sold to us is not the same as they had. More than the player Real wanted the brand Kaka. Is it fair to say that?
There are too many questions that come to my mind. So let’s just leave it at that and do what clever people do. Move on.
Para Siempre Blanco!