Zlatan Ibrahimovic on his way to Old Trafford as Ryan Giggs heads for exit door

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

0
Have your say

New signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic admits it was an easy decision to say yes to Manchester United and Jose Mourinho.

But as one influential figure arrives, another is set to depart as Ryan Giggs brings to an end a 29-year association with the club as there is no place for him in his current role as assistant manager.

However, loss of a loyal club servant will be eclipsed by the arrival of a genuine superstar.

Ibrahimovic, who recently retired from international duty with Sweden, completed his free transfer to Old Trafford after his contract expired at Paris St Germain.

It seems he has signed a one-year contract with the option of a further 12 months.

That potential extension means his stay could be longer than initially thought - he was expected to head to Major League Soccer next year - but much will depend on how his first season goes.

Judging by his first interview, in which the most repeated word was ‘win’, Ibrahimovic has every intention of bringing success to Old Trafford.

“I am super excited, super happy. Finally it has been done,” he told MUTV.

“There has been a lot of talk but we were not at the moment where everything is done and now the hard work starts.

“I played in the Euros and there was more talk about my future than the Euros.

“Finally everything is over and I can focus on my new club and do as good as possible and leave everything behind me.

“I think my decision was pretty easy, it was more to make it possible.

“I compare it with the (Floyd) Mayweather and (Manny) Pacquiao fight - they said it would never happen but it happened.

“I’d like to thank United and Jose Mourinho, obviously, because they made it possible.

“My decision was the easiest part. The rest was a puzzle but the puzzle came together and all of us are happy.”

Ibrahimovic has played under Mourinho before, at Inter Milan in 2008-9 winning the Serie A title together, and the Portuguese has obviously had a huge influence on the enigmatic Swede.

“I have great memories. The only regret I have with Jose is I had a short time with him, one season, but we won together and had a great time together and I learned a lot.

“I got to know him as a person not only as a coach. He’s a winner, I’m a winner and we both know what we want: wherever we go we win and we will win.

“I think it is a big challenge for me. Wherever I went I won and I am looking forward to this new adventure, a new chapter in my life.

“I don’t know how many players had the possibility to play in the competitions I have and at the same time be winning.

“I know my mentality and I come to win. I want to win but behind everything is hard work and that is what I come to do.”

The appreciation appears mutual with Mourinho heaping praise on his new striker.

“Zlatan needs no introduction. The statistics speak for themselves,” he said.

“Ibra is one of the best strikers in the world and a player who always gives 100 per cent.

“He has won the most important league championships in the world of football, now he has the opportunity to play in the best league in the world and I know he will grasp this opportunity and will work hard to help the team win titles.

“I am certain that his talent will delight fans at Old Trafford next season and that his experience will be invaluable in helping us develop.”