41-year-old superstar striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who played for Manchester United between the years of 2016 and 2018, has drawn the curtain on his professional football career [via Fabrizio Romano on Twitter].
After an monolithic 24-year journey, Ibrahimovic has finally decide to put his career to bed – he scored 405 goals across seven divisions.
In his tearful goodbye speech to AC Milan supporters, Ibrahimovic said [via BBC Sport]: “There are too many emotions for me right now. Forza Milan and goodbye. The first time I came here you gave me happiness, the second time you gave me love. You welcomed me with open arms, you made me feel at home, I will be a Milanista for the rest of my life.”
Romano’s tweet read as follows: “BREAKING: Zlatan Ibrahimović has now decided to retire from professional football with immediate effect. Incredible player, incredible icon.”
Ibrahimovic’s time at Manchester United
As previously mentioned, Ibrahimovic joined Manchester United in 2016 on a free transfer. At this point, he was already 34 years of age – but he was far from past his best.
In the 2016/17 season, the Swedish legend helped United to a League Cup and Europa League double. During his time at Old Trafford, Ibrahimovic scored 17 goals in 33 games.
Zlatan Ibrahimović career summary
Ibrahimovic’s professional career began at Malmo, amid a turbulent time for the club – he would then join Ajax in 2001, where he began to attract attention from top teams across Europe.
A mixed spell at Juventus led to a move to Inter Milan, where he led La Beneamata to a league title in his first season with the club. In 2009, he then moved to Barcelona – a move that would ultimately become the lowlight of his career.
Becoming disillusioned with Pep Guardiola’s coaching style, Ibrahimovic enjoyed a successful loan spell at AC Milan, before joining them permanently in 2011.
A four-year stay at PSG led to his move to Manchester United – after the termination of his Red Devils contract, he joined LA Galaxy in the MLS.
After leaving LA Galaxy in 2019, many expected Ibrahimovic to retire – but he wasn’t done yet. He once again joined AC Milan, helping them to Serie A league title in 2022.