Mon 27 February 2023 | 8:45

Ibrahimovic: I don’t want to be at Milan for what I did one, five or ten years ago

Milan star Zlatan Ibrahimovic says he does not want to stay at the Italian club just for his past.

After undergoing a knee surgery last May,


returned to action against Atalanta on Sunday. The 41-year-old striker replaced

Olivier Giroud

and received a standing ovation from the San Siro crowd.

“I missed the fans so much, I thank them for giving me strength, adrenaline and the motivation to continue. Without the support of the fans, it is difficult,”

Ibra told DAZN.

“I feel good, if we look back, I haven’t felt this good for a year and two months. I feel able to do what I can do. I felt free today to do what I love, which is to play football.

“I said that I’d make San Siro jump, well today it was jumping.”

Zlatan also read former


 teammate Massimo Ambrosini’s message to him on air.

“It says ‘Welcome back my friend, happy for you, you seemed free in your movements. Hugs.’ Thanks, my love.”

Ibrahimovic revealed that he delayed surgery by six months last season to help the team win the Scudetto.

“If I have to tell the whole story, I’ll be here for hours. I suffered a lot, so much. The last six months of last season I wanted in every way to help the team, even when I couldn’t really play. I could’ve had the surgery six months earlier, but I could tell this was the season we could win the Scudetto,”

he continued.

“I promised to the coach that I would hold off on the surgery because I wanted to be there for the team and help them. I tell you, I never suffered so much as I did last season for a trophy.

“It was also a year when the tragedy of losing Mino (Raiola), so mentally it was a lot of suffering too, not just physically. Thankfully, I have people around me who help give me the strength to keep going. When I’m in good shape, though, I am stronger than anyone. And I’m serious, Ambro.

“I feel like someone who can help more than I did today. I had two or three training sessions and played 15 minutes, imagine what I can do with training sessions. That is what I am missing, the training. It’s been a year and two months since I really got to work with the ball at my feet, but today it felt like no time had passed at all.”

Former Juventus and Inter star also become the oldest Milan player ever in a Serie A match, but insisted that he does not want to stay because of his achievements in the past.

“If I don’t set myself objectives, then I relax and start to feel like I belong in the past. I don’t, I belong in the present and want to challenge my teammates for playing time, otherwise I should not be here.

“I don’t want to be here for what I did one, five or ten years ago. It’s for what I do now. If I don’t bring results or think I only need to play the last 5-10 minutes, I will stay home. It’s already over if someone thinks that. I want to play the whole game.”

Zlatan explained why he decided to stay away from the Milan training ground in the first six months after surgery.

“The first six-seven months of the season I was not present at the training ground. I came to the games, but decided I wanted to have some distance to make a full recovery, as I was suffering too much last season. I realised that if after the surgery I continued the recovery here, I would feel impatient and want to rush my return, so I made that decision with Milan to recover at a distance.

“When I returned, I was present. I just have to look at my colleagues and they know what to do.”

Ibrahimovic also jokingly said he is ready to lower his salary in order to help Milan extend Rafael Leao’s contract.

“I lowered my salary to give more money to him!”

“Hmm! I am practically playing for free, if you want my house, I can give that to you!”



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source: SportMob

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