After months of suspense, AC Milan can finally confirm that Japanese midfielder Keisuke Honda will be joining the team in January.
Honda was linked to Milan during the summer transfer period, but a deal could not be finalized between the Rossoneri and his current club team, CSKA Moscow, before the season began in the fall. Now with the confirmation, Honda will man the trequartista position and prove to be a desperately-needed addition to a dismal and greatly underachieving Milan squad.
Honda is a dynamic playmaker who can serve as a multi-tool player for Milan by setting up opportunities with his passing and contribute with his dangerous scoring as an attacking midfielder and a deadly free-kick specialist.
AC Milan will take any help they can get at this point as they are sitting in ninth in the tables for Serie A, 22 points behind rival and league-leader Juventus. Injuries are doing a number on the team with last year’s team-leading scorer Stephan El Shaarawy only playing in four games so far this season.
Milan entered the 2013-14 campaign a serious contender for the Italian league title after an inspiring end to last season with Italian striker Mario Balotelli going on a scoring frenzy for the red and black, putting in 12 goals in just as many games.
Former Milan player and Brazilian international Kaka returned to the San Siro after the departure of Kevin Prince Boateng. Since then, the aging Kaka has not produced anything of inspiration in the midfield, only netting three goals with one assist. The Brazilian has also had trouble staying healthy this year.
Honda has expressed his excitement in coming to Milan and his contributions will be indicative of the team’s hopes to climb back into the top of the standings. Honda has played below his standards in Russia’s capital so far this season, so Milan will hope that a change of scenery to one of the biggest teams in world soccer will help the Japanese star regain his footing and revive the disappointing Italian giants.