The recent signing of Salomón Kalou, former player and figure of Chelsea, by Botafogo, joins a long list of European players who ended their careers far from this continent, either for the love of the shirt or for fulfilling a child’s dream. In this article you will find a brief review of some players who followed this practice:
Daniele de Rossi (Italy):
After his eternal romance with Roma, Daniele, after 18 consecutive seasons, fulfilled his dream of playing for Boca Juniors, a club with which he felt very identified. The negotiations took place thanks to his friendship with Nicolás Burdisso, his former partner in «La Loba» and who was the manager of the Argentine club at the time. However, he only lasted one season with the blue and gold, playing 7 games and scoring a single goal.
- Keisuke Honda (Japan):
The Japanese was, at the time, the hope of Japanese soccer, but the soccer world had other plans for him. After three seasons with the powerful AC Milan, the midfielder signed with the Mexican Pachuca, where he only played one season. Being out of work and, after his brief stint at Vitesse, he ended up signing for Botafogo, in addition to being the coach of the Cambodia team.
- Juanfran (Spain):
One of Atlético de Madrid’s benchmarks for «Cholo» Simeone. After 9 seasons with the rojiblanco team, he packed his bags and signed for Sao Paulo, where he would meet an old acquaintance: Dani Alves, who was returning to the club of his loves after his brilliant career in Barcelona. He currently has 2 seasons and records 26 games played.
- David Trezeguet (France)World champion in 1998 and figure in teams like Monaco and Juventus. The Franco-Argentinean returned to ascend with River Plate, a team that the previous season had lost the category and was in a financial and institutional crisis. With the «Millionaire» team, he played 38 games and scored 17 goals. He finally achieved his goal of returning to the first division and left for the Newells Old Boys, where he played for a season and then ended his career in Indian soccer.
Mauro Camoranesi (Italy):
The midfielder identified with Juventus was born in Argentina; however, he decided to defend the Italian team, which earned him world champion in Germany 2006. After his successful career in Europe, he returned to his native country and signed for Lanús, where he stayed for two seasons. He played for two more seasons in Racing de Avellaneda and retired.