Kaka regrets not joining Manchester City in 2009, the Premier League champions' former chief executive Garry Cook has claimed.
City made what was then a world-record 100 million-pound bid for the Brazilian just four months after Sheikh Mansour had bought the club.
Although they were in the lower half of the Premier League at the time, they launched an ambitious offer for a player who had won the Ballon d'Or in 2007.
Kaka, however, opted to stay put at AC Milan for the rest of the season before eventually joining Real Madrid in 2009 for 68.5 million euros.
The Brazilian then had a second stint at Milan before agreeing in the summer to sign for future MLS club Orlando City as a designated player, while he is currently on loan at Sao Paulo -- the club where he started his career.
"I have actually bumped into Kaka and he said: 'Sometimes I wish I had come,'" Cook told the Blue Moon podcast.
City ended up signing Craig Bellamy, Shay Given, Wayne Bridge and Nigel de Jong in the January transfer window instead of Kaka.
But Cook -- who resigned from his position at the Etihad Stadium in 2011 -- defended the bid for Kaka, which was deemed overly optimistic by many, arguing that it was a statement of intent from the club.
He added: "It was an attempt to try and get one of the best players in the world to come to the football club. There is a realism to knowing you have a very, very slight chance but it was a representation of our ambition.
"It made a lot of people go: 'Hold on a minute, maybe these people are serious' -- which impacts players, impacts the fans, impacts the employees and the world of football is starting to look different. All of a sudden, there is a new kid on the block."
City also attempted to sign Wayne Rooney in 2010 when the current Manchester United captain had said he wanted to leave Old Trafford.
Cook, however, accepts that the club were never close to striking a deal for the player, adding: "I can safely say we thought perhaps we were closer than they did, but you never really know the truth."