Zlatan Ibrahimovic is no longer dreaming but living his dreams of joining Manchester United and finally playing in the pretigeous English Premier League. Weeks of specualtions have been put to rest, following his free transfer to the Old Trafford completed 1 July.
The former Barcelona and Juventus player has scored 392 goals in 677 games and won a trophy every season of his career since 2001, including 13 league titles.
Last season was his most prolific, scoring 50 goals in 51 matches, a record for PSG. His tally of 38 league goals was also a club record.
In his four seasons at the French club, he won 12 trophies, including the domestic quadruple twice. On announcing he was leaving the Ligue 1 club, he tweeted: “I came like a king, left like a legend.”
This is a full transcript of the Swede’s first interview to MUTV as reported by SkyNews.
Welcome to Manchester United. How do you feel?
I’m super excited. I am super, super happy. Finally it is done! There have been a lot of talks but it has come to the moment where everything is done. Now we start, now the hard work starts. I am super happy and just waiting to get to know the guys, to train and I am here in the training facility. It looks like it is a big club, a huge club, so I am excited. There was lots of speculation and you had fun with it. Are you happy that is over now?
I am happy and now I can focus on one thing and that is the United shirt. I can leave everything behind me because I played in the European Championship and there was more talk about my future than the Europeans. Finally now everything is over and I can focus on my new club, go back to hard work and do as well as possible.
How important was Jose Mourinho to this transfer?
I think my decision was pretty easy, it was more difficult to make everything possible. I compare it with the Mayweather and Pacquiao fight. They said it would never happen but it happened. I want to say thank you to my team, United and Jose Mourinho because they all made it possible. Now I am a United player and I am super, super happy. My decision was the easiest part, let’s say. The rest was a puzzle but the puzzle came together and we are all happy.
You must have great memories of working with him at Inter?
I have great memories. The only regret I had with Jose was that it was a short time with him. I had one season. We won together, we enjoyed it together, we had a great time together and I learned a lot. I got to know him as a person, not only as a coach, and I only have positive things to say. He is a winner, I am a winner, we both know what we want and that is to win. Wherever we go we win, and we will win.
Was a spell in the Premier League the only thing missing from your glittering career?
I think it is a big challenge for me. Wherever I go I have won and I am looking forward to this new adventure, a new chapter in my career and my life. If I can win here, I don’t know how many players have had the possibility to play in different competitions like I have and won at the same time. I will work hard, I know my mentality, I come to win and I want to win. Behind everything is hard work and that is what I have been doing so far, and that is what I am going to do now.
It is an exciting time in the Premier League with players and managers arriving. What are you looking forward to about it?
I think the whole Premier League and to be representing Manchester United. Every game will be a wow for the world, especially with everything that is going on with the new coaches and the new players, and me also. It will be a funny year in a good competition, a hard competition and I am not worried.
You have won 10 titles in 11 seasons. Can you do that here?
I have come to win, I haven’t come to waste time or to look at the weather. I am here to win and that is my objective. I don’t give up until I win. That is the objective, to win. We will play in the Europa League and for everything we play for we go to win. With the coach, with the players, everyone working collectively, playing collectively, you can reach your goals. We will do all of the things we need to do to reach our main goal.
We have promising strikers coming through like Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial. Can somebody like you with your experience help them along?
I think so. I have experience from different cultures and different team-mates, world class team-mates, so I learned from then. First of all it is up to every player. If you are professional and working hard enough then you will succeed. You will become a top player. I will do my best to help everybody, not only the two names you gave. Even the club, to bring it up to where it belongs and that is at the top of the table.
Are you looking forward to playing at Old Trafford? You’ve been once before with Inter…
Yeah I am looking forward to that first game, I will enjoy every second and every minute of it. The stadium is amazing the supporters are even more amazing. That will be a big day for me and I am absolutely looking forward to it.
What happens now for you after a long season with PSG and playing at the European Championship – when will your pre-season start?
Now I breathe out because everything is done after all the talks and speculation! Now it is official, I am a United player and I am the happiest in the world. But now I need a bit of rest after the long season and after the Euros. I will take my rest. How long that will be? I will discuss it with the boss and we will see.
After Paris you said you came as a king and left as a legend. When you leave here, how would you like to be described?
Hopefully I have the same scenario! But this is a new chapter and I don’t like to compare the past with the present. This is different. This will be different and you will see at the end of it.
What is your message to the United fans?
I am super happy and super excited. I am looking forward to the season that is coming. You are great and keep supporting the team. This year will be exciting and there will be great things happening. Keep pushing up and we will give back to you. Hopefully we will give back more than one trophy.
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