Brazil & AC Milan legend Kaka announces retirement

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Real Madrid and Barcelona have sent several players to Major League Soccer over the years, and here's a look at the star-studded list of alumni

10 Real Madrid and Barcelona alumni who played in MLS

Real Madrid and Barcelona have sent several players to Major League Soccer over the years, and here's a look at the star-studded list of alumni

Brazil legend Kaka has announced his retirement from football, ending speculation over his future following his exit from MLS side Orland City earlier in 2017.

The star playmaker took to Twitter and Instagram Sunday to post his goodbye to the sport.

Kaka wrote: "Father, It was much more than I could ever imagined. Thank you! I’m now ready for the next journey. In Jesus' name. Amen."

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Kaka, 35, brings to an end an impressive career spanning from 2001 to 2017, and saw him win a World Cup with Brazil, Serie A and Champions League titles with A.C. Milan. In addition he won the Ballon d'Or in 2007 — the last person other than Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi to take home the award.

Kaka got his start with Brazilian giants Sao Paulo, before moving to Milan in 2003. There he emerged as one of the world's best and helped the club to a Serie A title in 2003-04, a Champions League final appearance in 2004-05 and finally the European crown itself in 2006-07. 

He would later turn down the opportunity to join Manchester City in a £100 million transfer, and instead joined Real Madrid. There he would not quite reach the same heights he had with Milan, though he did a La Liga title with the club in 2011-12.

After a return to Milan for the 2013-14 season, Kaka signed with then-MLS expansion side Orlando City ahead of the team's debut, and spent the remainder of 2014 on loan with Sao Paolo. 

Joining Orlando City for the start of the 2015 season, he went on to play three years with the MLS side, though injuries and effectiveness limited him to just 18 starts in his final season.

In October, Kaka announced he would not be returning to Orlando, though he declined at that time to retire officially.

Kaka was capped 92 times for Brazil, and was a member of the 2002 team that won the World Cup in South Korea and Japan, though he played a limited role. He would also win two Confederations Cup with Brazil, one in 2005 and the other in 2009. 

His last appearance for Brazil was in May 2016, when he came on as a substitute agains Panama in a 2-0 victory.

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