Italian youngster hopes to repay faith from club.
AC Milan starlet Riccardo Saponara has described comparisons with Real Madrid’s Kaka as “excessive” as he looks to follow in the footsteps of his idol.
The 21-year-old completed a move to the Rossoneri from Empoli this summer, having helped the club to promotion from Serie B with 11 goals and 14 assists.
While he has missed the pre-season schedule up to this point due to injury, he is expected to have a significant impact this year as the club look to re-introduce the trequartista role back into the starting line-up.
Despite similarities in their characteristics, Saponara has again played down talk of being compared with Kaka, but revealed that he hopes to continue to develop at Milan and reach the same level as his idol.
“I may look similar to Kaka in certain movements, but there is an abyss between him and myself,” he told Forza Milan as reported by Football Italia.
“Kaka is a phenomenon, whereas I have so much to learn from the Real Madrid man and also my new team-mates here at Milan.
“Kaka has always been my idol, the player who I have always aspired to become, but the comparisons with him are excessive,” he added.
Milan are expected to revert back to a 4-3-1-2 set-up next season, a system in which Kaka flourished during his time with the club before leaving for Madrid.
With Saponara likely to be deployed behind the two strikers, his skill on the ball and acceleration will undoubtedly draw comparisons with the former San Siro great.
However, he has insisted that he just wants to prove to the club that they made the right decision in trusting in him.
“It shows that the club are prepared to change the system for me,” he added. “They have great consideration for me as a player.
“It will now be up to me on the field of play to prove that was the right decision to make,” he concluded.
With moves for Keisuke Honda and Adem Ljajic still in play but looking unlikely this summer, Saponara will hope to resume full training as soon as possible and work his way into Massimiliano Allegri’s first team.