[ITALY] Kaka isn't going anywhere. One of the most-hyped transfer deals in history proved to be a non-starter when the Brazilian said he was happy at AC Milan, ending talks with Manchester City about a deal reported to be worth $147 million.
"All the messages coming my way said to choose with my heart," Kaka told Milan Channel on Monday night. "And at the end that's what the choice was. It was absolutely not economical."
Such was the high stakes involved that Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi, AC Milan's owner, returned from Middle East peace talks in Egypt to meet with Vice President Adriano Galliani, then made the announcement on Italian television.
"For Kaka, money isn't everything," Berlusconi said in a telephone interview with "Processo di Biscardi." "When I heard he preferred to stay, that he hadn't thought about losing a chance for a higher salary and that he put the values of the club, friendship and fans' affection above all else, I said, 'Come on,' and we hugged."
Kaka is under contract with the Italian club through 2013.
Milan fans had protested about a possible move to City, owned by Sheikh Mansour al-Nahyan, at Saturday's league game against Fiorentina, and 500 fans protested outside Milan's offices on Monday, lighting flares and chanting "Don't sell Kaka!"
When Kaka approached a window with a Milan jersey in hand late Monday night and beat his hand three times on his heart, he sent 50 fans standing outside his house into delirium.