Zlatan Ibrahimovic is back at Manchester United, after it was revealed on Thursday that he has signed a new one-year contract with the Premier League leaders.
The former Sweden international joined the Reds on a free transfer last summer, and he enjoyed a fine debut campaign in which he scored 28 goals in 46 matches before he was sidelined with a serious knee injury in April. He has since been recuperating as he strives for a full recovery, but in the meantime, he was officially released when his contract at Old Trafford reached its expiry.
Ibrahimovic was said to be a target of LA Galaxy, whilst a number of Italian clubs were also said to be monitoring his situation. But there had been growing speculation that he could still have a future in the red half of Manchester, and this was confirmed on Thursday when it was revealed he has signed a new one-year deal and will take the number 10 shirt following Wayne Rooney’s exit.
“I am back to finish what I started. It was always mine and the club’s intention for me to stay,” Ibrahimovic said. “I cannot wait to get back out on that Old Trafford pitch, but I also know that I have to take my time to make sure that I am ready. I have been working hard and will continue to do so to make sure I am in the best possible condition for my return to the pitch.”
United have started the new season with two successive 4-0 wins, against West Ham United and at Swansea City. One of the stars of their table-topping form has been record signing Romelu Lukaku, who has already scored three times. The thought of the Belgian linking up with Ibrahimovic is sure to set pulses racing at Old Trafford, and Jose Mourinho is delighted to have such an option.
“We are delighted Zlatan Ibrahimovic is on the road to recovery and we are equally delighted to have his ambition and experience back with us,” said the Portuguese coach on the official club website. “After his contribution last season, he deserves our trust and we will be patient waiting for him to return. I have no doubt that he will be important in the second part of the season.”