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Preparing for the World Cup: Player to Watch, Kaká 1

Posted on March 12, 2010 by Thomas Rooney
Kaká is the leader of the Brazilian squad for the 2010 World Cup.

Kaká is the leader of the Brazilian squad for the 2010 World Cup.

A team does not become one of the World Cup 2010 betting favorites without talent in all positions and great overall depth, but Brazil’s hopes of glory are strongly pinned to the performance of their top player Kaká. The Real Madrid playmaker should be one of the stars of the tournament and prove on a global stage why he was once voted the World player of the year.

Some of the world’s greatest ever players do not have great World Cup records and Kaká’s previous appearances – 25 minutes as a substitute in 2002 and a solitary goal, albeit a superb one, in an unmemorable Brazilian campaign four years later – means the best Brazilian player of his generation might end up being included on that list.

However, everything is in place for Kaká to make this his career-defining year. At 27 he is at his peak and part of a team that is many observers’ favorite to lift the trophy. He is the attacking heartbeat of the Samba Kings, able to prompt attacks with his guileful passing and surging dribbling.

True, the goals have dried up recently – only four since he was voted the world’s best in 2007 – but he is hitting the net regularly for free-scoring Real Madrid and can be expected to get more chances for his national team in the summer, who often go through the motions in friendlies.

Not since 1986 has a World Cup-winner be sustained throughout the tournament by the brilliance of one man, and whilst it might be too much to expect Kaká to hit the heights Diego Maradona reached in Mexico, if he plays his best it is probably safe to say that World Cup 2010 odds will back Brazil to become world champions for the sixth time.

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