Kaka (right) and his teammates argue with the Red Bulls. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
ORLANDO, Fla. – Orlando City SC captain Kaka said Monday night he will abide by the one-game suspension incurred after receiving a red card in the waning minutes of the 3-1 loss at the Red Bulls Saturday night, according to the Major League Soccer club.
Kaka will sit out Saturday’s home game against Columbus Crew SC at Orlando City Stadium.
In the closing minutes of Saturday’s match against the Red Bulls at Red Bull Arena, Kaka was issued a straight red card following a playful interaction with former teammate Aurélien Collin.
Immediately following the video review of the incident, several Orlando City players and Collin approached the referee to explain the friendly nature of the situation.
“After much deliberation, which included conversations about the global attention this incident is receiving from fans and media alike, the club will respect the decision made by the Video Assistant Referee, the Professional Referee Organization and Major League Soccer to avoid further unjustified consequences that may come from appealing the decision made on the field,” a team statement said.
“Though Orlando City SC fully supports MLS, PRO and the new video review system, the club does not support the notion that Kaká — a role model known around the world for his upstanding character and demeanor — is guilty of violent conduct, defined as an attempt to use excessive force or brutality against an opponent when not challenging for the ball. Moreover, we also do not believe he deliberately ‘struck’ an opponent or any other person on the head or face with his hand or arm during the match.”
According to the club, Kaka has only received two straight red cards in his club career, both of them in MLS.