LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – Kaká was just about the only thing missing on Friday when Orlando City and Brazil’s São Paulo FC met up for an international friendly at Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex.
The AC Milan midfielder has been linked to both clubs this week through various media reports in a deal that would send him to São Paulo for the remainder of the Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A season before joining the Lions in Major League Soccer in 2015.
Orlando City coach Adrian Heath was asked following the 0-0 draw between the two clubs about the kind of impact such a signing would have on the local Brazilian population.
“The club had made a statement today that we’re in advanced talks to sign Kaká, and we’re all optimistic. I’m really hopeful,” Heath said. “You’ve probably seen a little bit of what it’s going to be like next year. We’re talking about one of the world’s global names, one of the best players of probably the last 30 years.
"We’re hoping to get it done. We hope at this time next year he’s running out in a purple shirt.”
The announced crowd of 5,029 was littered with Brazilian fans wearing national team colors and they helped to provide one of the best atmospheres at an Orlando City home match this season.
Afterwards many of those fans flocked to get a glimpse of the São Paulo players as they made their way to the locker room in hopes of getting pictures and autographs. Should things go as planned, those same fans will be lined up for Kaká and the Lions come 2015.