Zlatan Ibrahimovic relishing reuniting with Jose Mourinho

New signing Zlatan Ibrahimovic admits it was an easy decision to say yes to Manchester United and Jose Mourinho.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic relishing reuniting with Jose Mourinho

But as one influential figure arrives, another is set to depart as Ryan Giggs brings to an end a 29-year association with the club as there is no place for him in his current role as assistant manager.

However, the loss of a loyal club servant will be overshadowed by the arrival of Ibrahimovic, who recently retired from international duty with Sweden. He has signed a one-year contract with the option of a further 12 months.

“I am super excited, super happy. Finally it has been done,” Ibrahimovic told MUTV. “There has been a lot of talk but we were not at the moment where everything is done and now the hard work starts.

“I played in the Euros and there was more talk about my future than the Euros.

“Finally everything is over and I can focus on my new club and do as good as possible and leave everything behind me. I think my decision was pretty easy, it was more to make it possible.

“I compare it with the (Floyd) Mayweather and (Manny) Pacquiao fight - they said it would never happen but it happened. I’d like to thank United and Jose Mourinho, obviously, because they made it possible. My decision was the easiest part. The rest was a puzzle but the puzzle came together and all of us are happy.”

Ibrahimovic has played under Mourinho before, at Inter Milan in 2008-9 winning the Serie A title together, and the Portuguese has obviously had a huge influence on the enigmatic Swede.

“I have great memories. The only regret I have with Jose is I had a short time with him, one season, but we won together and had a great time together and I learned a lot.

“He’s a winner, I’m a winner and we both know what we want: wherever we go we win and we will win.”

The appreciation appears mutual with Mourinho heaping praise on his new striker.

“Zlatan needs no introduction. The statistics speak for themselves,” he said.

“Ibra is one of the best strikers in the world and a player who always gives 100%. I am certain that his talent will delight fans at Old Trafford next season and that his experience will be invaluable in helping to develop the younger players in the squad.”

There was not so much love for Giggs, though, who after making a record 963 appearances for the club before joining the backroom team, has discovered Mourinho does not want to keep him on the coaching staff, instead giving the assistant manager role to Rui Faria.

The Old Trafford club had hoped Giggs could be persuaded to stay on in a different role but the 42-year-old Welshman appears to have decided to move on.

Club officials have not confirmed the news yet but the BBC reported Giggs’ departure will be announced in the coming days.

Meanwhile Mourinho’s teenage son, Jose junior, has revealed he has signed a scholarship deal with Sky Bet Championship club Fulham.

The 16-year-old, a goalkeeper who has previously featured for both Chelsea and Real Madrid’s youth teams - clubs managed by his father, said he has put pen to paper on a two-year contract with Fulham.

“Proud to say that I signed my two-year scholarship deal with Fulham FC... Thank you to everyone who supported me, I’ll make you proud,” Mourinho junior said on Instagram next to a picture of him signing the paperwork.

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