New AC Milan manager Filippo Inzaghi will be making a bold statement of intent if he manages to offload former Real Madrid and Manchester City forward Robinho this summer.
The Brazilian, whose career has toiled in recent years, has been abject for the Rossoneri ever since his arrival in 2010 and consequently missed out on a spot in Luis Felipe Scolari’s World Cup squad this summer.
MLS outfit Orlando City are in talks for his services, with Santos also eying a reunion although reportedly baulking at his high wage demands.
Best days gone
There was once a time when Robinho was considered one of the most talented youngsters on the planet, a reputation that forced City to smash the British transfer record for him in August 2008 on the most dramatic of transfer deadline days.
He touched down in Manchester after a successful spell at Madrid, where he won two La Liga titles in three years under Fabio Capello and Bernd Schuster. However Madrid’s attempts to prise Cristiano Ronaldo away from Manchester United had left him feeling unwanted, ultimately prompting an exit to the Premier League.
There he produced sporadic moments of genius, including a wonderfully executed free-kick against Chelsea on his debut, but as City’s assault on silverware took flight the Brazilian was left behind.
Before signing on at Milan, Roberto Mancini shipped him out to Santos on loan for a second spell with the club he had started his career with.
There he recaptured the form of old, netting 11 times in 23 games, yet the Brazilian club were unconvinced at a permanent purchase and failed to make a concrete bid for the man once handpicked by Pele as his true heir.
Turkish duo Besiktas and Fenerbahce weighed up making a bid for him, but Robinho instead opted for Serie A and Milan with the belief that he remained capable of plying his trade at the highest level.
His time at the San Siro has been underwhelming, and despite his popularity amongst the fans has never been deserving of his place at the club. Inzaghi has inherited a squad bereft of any true talent, and has already set about transforming the squad with the signings of Jeremy Menez and Alex, as well as the decision to release club legend Kaka.
His best campaign came in 2010-2011, where he scored 15 times to help Milan win the Scudetto back from rivals Inter Milan.
Ultimately his time on Italian soil will be remembered as a glaring failure, and any move to America will be a true acceptance that the sun is setting on a career once illuminated with promise and potential.