Zlatan Ibrahimovic dedicates AC Milan’s Scudetto to Raiola as Swedish star defies doubters

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic has announced his AC Milan campaign victory as the Rossoneri were awarded Serie A champions for the first time in 11 years – but the veteran has not yet decided to play for another season.

The 40-year-old Swedish international striker began his second spell with AC Milan in December 2019 and said that was due to his long-time agent Mino Raiola, who died in late April.

Ibrahimovic handed over his trophy title with Milan to Raiola, saying he supported him to remove Milan from the bench.

The impact of the former Juventus and Inter player at the San Siro has been impressive, with a number of early goals working to promote the club and set the tone for success to follow.

Last season, Ibrahimovic scored 16 goals in 26 games as Milan finished second in Serie A, and this season he has played 26 games, started just 12 games, and conceded eight goals.

Recurrence has been declining and injury has been a problem, knee and Achilles have a problem hampering his season in this regard, but Ibrahimovic’s good performance continues to be contagious as he shows a good presence in the dressing room.

“When I came back here, I remember a reporter at a press conference saying that normally those who go back to where they used to be can do very bad things,” Ibrahimovic told DAZN after winning the title 3-0 at Sassuolo.

“I replied that I would fight to get the club back and win the Scudetto. Nobody believed it, but we are here, we have worked hard and sacrificed a lot, which proves that because of performance nothing is impossible.”

Ibrahimovic was a key figure for Milan when he won the Serie A title in 2010-11, having previously topped the table in Italy with Juve and Inter. He played for Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United, and the LA Galaxy, where it was widely speculated that he was about to finish his career, despite scoring many goals. Returning to Milan proved otherwise.

He has noticed that his attempts to play this year have been weak compared to the previous two campaigns, and his contract will expire next month.

“But I think I’ve been useful to the team off the field,” he added.

AC Milan have scored 86 points in Serie A this season, and in 2005-06 alone (88 points) they have managed to surpass the three-point period to win.

Speaking about Raiola, Ibrahimovic said: “Dedication to Mino Raiola. This is the first trophy I have won without him.

“When I returned to Europe, I was close to Napoli, so I asked him where I could go to make a difference and he replied that I was the only one who could save Milan.

Ibrahimovic smoked cigarettes and celebrated with champagne after Milan defended the Scudetto. If that raises a sense of fate, it seems that Ibrahimovic did not mean it that way.

He will undergo a physical examination now that the season is over, and said: “If I was healthy, it would not be my last game. I will consider whether I have surgery.”

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