Kaka coming to Orlando? Possibly: Well, the Kaka-to-Orlando rumors have come back up again.
The Brazilian playmaker told Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera that if he leaves AC Milan in the summer, he will look to play in MLS. And as we know, Kaka has a very strong relationship with Lions’ owner and fellow Brazilian Flávio Augusto da Silva.
“One day, I would like to play in America,” Kaká told the Italian paper. “Let’s see. At the end of the season, I will talk to [general manager Adriano Galliani]. Not just to speak about bonuses and money — money is not the main thing for me now, and I think that is understood. I want to see what his ideas are and what the club’s ideas are. If it turns out I need to move, I will choose the MLS.”
Kaka also said that the upcoming World Cup in Brazil this summer could effect his decision.
“There’s a lot to happen yet, and all this can change my decision, yes,” Kaká said. “I’d rather wait, let things go slowly and talk later.”
“I have an excellent relationship with Flavio, we are good friends, but this is unknown. I want to take it one step at a time. I’m happy here in Milan, I hope to continue here, but let’s just decide at the end of the season. There’s a lot to happen yet, and Galliani and I will decide what’s best for me and Milan.”
Making the rumors even more appealing to City fans, according to the Spanish daily AS, Kaká already has a verbal agreement with Orlando City to join the club in 2015 for its debut in MLS.
However, team officials denied any deal with Kaka already being in place.
Kaka is one of the most popular players in the world, and it would not only mean a great deal for him to come to Orlando next season, but it would also be a huge deal for MLS being able to have one of it’s clubs be the home to such a big name talent.
It would be pretty easy to save that Kaka would be the league’s biggest arrival since David Beckham come over to join the LA Galaxy in 2007.
(Thoughts: I think that bringing in Kaka would be an absolutely great move by Orlando City ownership. This would not only put them on the map in MLS for their first season, but it would draw tons of world-wide attention on one of the games best players, and help improve the overall image of Orlando City SC.)
MLS coming to Atlanta: A few years down the road, Orlando City SC might be getting a new rival to play against.
According to multiple reports, Major League Soccer is set to announce that a soccer franchise based out of Atlanta, Georgia will join the league as it’s 23rd team.
If all goes as planned, the club would begin play by 2017, with it’s home games being played at the new $1 billion downtown stadium currently being built for the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons.
The Atlanta club’s 2017 debut would be one year ahead of the Miami-based club owned by David Beckham, which was plans to enter the league in 2018 while it waits for a stadium deal wot be agreed upon.
As it stands now, there are no MLS teams in the southeast region of the United State. Orlando City will be the first team to join since the Tampa Bay Mutiny and Miami Fusion folded in the early 2000′s.
Based on this report, it looks as if the Lions will have their first close rival joining the league very soon, with the second coming in soon after. For the moment, it would seem like the Lions’ first MLS rival will be Sporting Kansas City, one of the closest teams, and their current MLS partner.
More stadium details emerge: The Lions are planning to play the second half of the 2015 MLS season — their first year in the league — in the new downtown soccer stadium being built on Orlando, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
A construction agreement for the stadium was approved by the City of Orlando last week, and it included a completion date of February 1st, 2016, but team officials told the Sentinel that that date was given as a “worst case scenario,” which makes sense because all other reports had things finishing up next summer.
The Lions are planning out their final USL Pro season in the ESPN Wide World of Sports complex in Kissimmee. They’ll move into the newly renovated Citrus Bowl to being their inaugural MLS campaign, with this move into the new stadium coming near the end of the season.
The Sentinel report also mentioned that the Lions were looking into naming rights for the new stadium, as well as possible TV deal with several local media outlets for next season.