Orlando City may be about to reunite Kaká with former AC Milan teammate Kevin-Prince Boateng, according to a report by David Amoyal from GianlucaDimarzio.com. The story says that the Lions' captain has reached out to Boateng personally to persuade him to jump from the Bundesliga to MLS. From the article:
Boateng is looking for a fresh start. Kaka' personally called Boateng to convince him. Orlando City is the most recent MLS team to contact Boateng about a move to North America, they will make an offer shortly. Could Boateng be the next star to join MLS? Galatasaray is still in the race, but no longer in pole position- Boateng could be leaving Germany to move to Florida.
However, despite the article calling them teammates at Milan, it doesn't seem like they ever played there together. Kaká was there from 2003-09 and again for the 2013-14 season. Boateng was in Milan from 2010-13. There may have been some overlap there for a couple of off-season friendlies, but we're honestly not sure they were at Milan at the same time, so take the "phone call" report with an enormous grain of salt.
Boateng has played with Schalke 04 since 2013, where the 28-year-old Ghanaian international had four assists in 16 appearances this past season in combined Bundesliga and Champions League play. The midfield/forward has seven goals and six assists in 50 appearances (in all competitions) in his two seasons with Schalke.
Prior to joining the Bundesliga side, Boateng played 58 games in Serie A with AC Milan over three seasons, scoring 10 goals with seven assists in league play. He also added four goals and two assists in 15 UEFA Champions League outings. Before Milan, Boateng played three seasons in the EPL with Portsmouth and Tottenham, producing three goals in 36 games.
He has also been capped 15 times with Ghana, scoring twice. He also has German ties, having been born in Berlin. His half-brother, Jerome, is a defender with the German national team and Bayern Munich.
What would Boateng's addition mean for City?
Well, although he isn't really a right wing type, he could give Kaká a more dynamic midfield partner on the right than Eric Avila or Lewis Neal. This has been an area of need since Kevin Molino tore his ACL, but Boateng's dynamism comes more from power than creativity, so it would not be a like-for-like swap for Molino. He also is known to have a high work rate getting forward but his defense is sometimes suspect. Then again, perhaps he just needs to play for Adrian Heath to work on his deficiencies.
Boateng could also provide additional depth at forward or as a box-to-box midfielder.
This is a move that doesn't seem like the best fit, but it could make sense for Orlando City if they can get him on the cheap. Would it require a Core Player or Designated Player slot? Possibly. I don't think the club should spend DP money on Boateng, but he could slot into the Core Player spot, salary-wise. If that happened, Orlando would almost certainly not be able to fulfill the rumored signing of Chicharito or add another quality defender. So it's probably not worth it for a player of Boateng's caliber, who may not exactly fit the hole left behind by Molino.
But if the Lions could land Boateng without having to use up a DP or Core Player slot, he might be a good addition, if only to provide an additional attack-minded midfielder to spell the captain.
What do you think? Should Orlando City be looking in Boateng's direction during this transfer window?