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Kaka stays at AC Milan
MILAN (Reuters) - Kaka is staying at AC Milan and will not move to Manchester City, the two clubs said on Monday, ending what could have been a world record transfer deal.
Media reports said English Premier League side City, the world's richest club, had bid 110 million euros (£76 million) for the Brazil playmaker and were offering wages never seen before in soccer.
The two clubs differed on the reasons for the collapse of talks, with Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi saying the 26-year-old had turned City down.
"Money is not everything for Kaka, there are things more important than money. We are happy," the Italian Prime Minister told Italian television.
"We offered the player the chance to consider the offer...but he has higher values."
City, owned by the Abu Dhabi United Group, said an agreement with the Serie A side had not been possible.
"Manchester City has terminated its discussions with AC Milan over the possible transfer of the player Kaka," a City statement said.
"Following a meeting in Milan today, the club felt that it was unlikely that the two parties could reach common ground for an agreement. The discussions reached only a preliminary stage and the player was not involved at any time."
City executive chairman Garry Cook added: "Whilst Manchester City Football Club has an obvious interest in world class players of the quality of Kaka, we owe it to our fans that such a transfer must work on every level; commercially, financially, in terms of results on the field and within Manchester City's broader community."
Cheering fans gathered outside Kaka's central Milan home once the news started to emerge.
Milan chief executive Adriano Galliani met City officials last Tuesday to first discuss their interest in the 2007 Ballon d'Or winner and FIFA world player of the year.
Kaka, in his only public comment since the saga began, said on Wednesday: "I want to grow old at Milan. My aim is to become the captain of this team. I have already turned down some big offers."
Despite his declaration, ambitious City continued to sound bullish about their chances of signing him and at the weekend Berlusconi said it would be tough to hang on to the player given the sums of money being discussed.
Kaka, courted by Real Madrid last year and also linked with Chelsea in the media, played in Milan's 1-0 Serie A win over Fiorentina on Saturday and was overwhelmed by the response of the fans inside the San Siro who demanded talks were ended.
Supporters also protested against a possible sale outside Milan's city centre headquarters on Monday.
City, in the bottom half of the Premier League and with little pedigree in England never mind Europe, signed Robinho from Real Madrid in the previous window and did have some success in the transfer market earlier in the day.
They signed Craig Bellamy from West Ham United while Dutch international midfielder Nigel De Jong has also been given permission to speak to City about a move from Hamburg SV.
(Additional reporting by Antonella Ciancio; editing by Miles Evans)
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