Ambrosini says Leao renewal will ‘depend on him’ and says Kaka-De Ketelaere comparisons are ‘unfair’

By Euan Burns -

Former AC Milan midfielder Massimo Ambrosini has said that the renewal of Rafael Leao will depend on his feelings and that the comparisons between Charles De Ketelaere and Kaka were unfair.

Speaking during an interview with Tuttosport (via Pianeta Milan) on Wednesday, Ambrosini discussed a number of topics around the current Milan setup and the players.

One of the major topics around Milan right now is the renewal of Rafael Leao’s contract. The Portuguese forward is being chased by plenty of big clubs and he is out of contract in June 2024.

Speaking about Leao and his future, Ambrosini said that the renewal will depend on the player.

“The boy is still within a growth process. Mother Nature has endowed him with a talent better than the other, and that is why he should not be satisfied with what he is doing. Limiting these lapses in form is up to him alone,” Ambrosini said.

“Leao at Milan is protected, well-liked and hardly questioned. I repeat, it [the renewal] depends on him. The six months post-World Cup will be decisive to see if he can make the leap to the Champions League as well.”

Another current player that Ambrosini discussed is De Ketelaere, who is yet to have the impact that Milan feel he has the potential for.

Ambrosini thinks that the early comparisons that were made between the Belgian youngster and Brazilian legend Kaka were unfair.

“There is one every 50 years of players like Kaka. When Ricky arrived in Italy this sport was changing and he was a different type of footballer,” Ambrosini said

“That’s why comparing him to De Ketelaere was unfair. But I think that parallelism was short-lived given how different the two are as players.

“Why is he struggling? Coming into a new world, he is very careful to apply himself to what is required of him. I think that has taken some of the lightheartedness out of his game.”


Tags AC Milan Charles De Ketelaere Massimo Ambrosini Rafael Leao Ricardo Kaka


  1. Don’t put Kaka and CDK in the same sentence ever again. Took only 1 match to see that they’re world apart, totally different type of player (to put it mildly).

    1. I don’t like hating on people but you are someone who has always been so negative to CDK. I still remember you saying he’s horrible and hating on him through the transfer rumour stage, and yet you’re still hating acting as if comparing CDK to Kaka is justifiable and that CDK just isn’t good enough. CDK first of all has just joined let’s start from there, now secondly I’d like to say that he showed many time his quality in his passing like for example his quick turn and cross to kalulu in a serie a match which unfortunately kalulu couldn’t convert, and therefore he’s had many good moments but it seems the dilemma to all this hate comes from people like you who compare him to kaka from the get go and if he can’t live up to the standards of a Balon D’Or winner he apparently is not good enough. Maybe as a milanista you should be more positive towards our players because I don’t know what grudge you have but to hate on a new 21 year old in the team is not right, and if we keep this expectations so high in regards to him then I’m sure Milan will sell him and we will have a second Paqueta where we asked too much too quickly of a young growing player. Stop hating is the morale for you Ibrahim because all anyone can take from you hating is that you’re keyboard warrior that feels to need to express your hateful feelings behind a screen:))))

  2. Any comparison of a player from today with an all time great player from the past is unfair. But those comparisons are made by media pundits, Ambrosini’s colleagues. who would say anything just so they can go viral or trend for a moment

  3. Man, 22 was a beast so its unfair to compare him to anyone not named Messi or Ronaldo (both R9 and CR7). Plus Kaka wasn’t as hyped coming from sao paolo to Milan as CDK from Brugge, plus we had Rui Costa at that Position whereas CDK was touted as the best 10 at Milan when he signed so Kaka had to oust one of the world’s best but on a decline bringing out his best. Plus Milan was one of the world’s best teams with Sheva leading so we didn’t need a saviour per se. Now we’re on the up but no comparison to Milan when Kaka signed. That Milan would tear apart most current CL teams.

    CDK needs a similar transition as Kaka. Prospect, to frequent sub to Starter maybe within one year…Throwing him into the fray and expecting a Kaka repeat would be detrimental to his growth.

    Pioli has shown he’s perfect for young talent so I’d say 1 to 2 years like Rafa, Isma, Theo, Alexis and Brahim got and we’ll probably have a young KDB in our team. Sell or loan him and we’re f*cked!

  4. Yes Kaka & CDK have different trait. Kaka has the Brazilian trait with a little bit egoism and his most dangerous weapon is his shot & agility. Thats why opponents need to close Kaka’s space but not close him down too tight, leave the other have better space especially for Inzaghi who is the best person ever to find spaces.

    For CDK, he is genius with his vision. He is more like Kevin De Bruyne. He need to be close down tightly so limit his vision. So thats the room for improvement for CDK : How to anticipate the tight closing down for him, and switch it to his favour like : score a free-kick. It means CDK need to be faster to force opponent conceded a free-kick for a foul.

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