Friday 23 March 2018

Zlatan Ibrahimovic's fighting words are just what Manchester United fans will want to hear

The talented United youngster believes playing alongside Ibrahimovic can help unlock his potential
The talented United youngster believes playing alongside Ibrahimovic can help unlock his potential

Tom Rooney

Success, according to Zlatan Ibrahimović, permeates every fibre of Manchester United’s DNA, which is exactly why he joined the club at this late stage of his gilded career.

Aside from Jose Mourinho, the gregarious Swede is without doubt United’s most high profile acquisition in recent months and, even the arrival of Paul Pogba for a world record transfer fee, might not alter that particular dynamic.

Eric Bailly and Henrikh Mkhitaryan are fine players, but they are not in receipt of Ibrahimović’s cache.

After enjoying a goal scoring debut against Galatasaray in Gothenburg, the 34-year-old had a decent cameo in Wayne Rooney’s testimonial with Everton at Old Trafford.

However, tomorrow at Wembley, the real business starts. United can truly kick start the Mourinho era by defeating Leicester City in the Charity Shield and adding some silverware to the cabinet ahead of their Premier League opener with  Bournemouth seven days later.

Ibrahimović is eminently eager to ensure that’s exactly what transpires.

"Let’s see. I mean I believe it’s the first trophy game against Leicester. One game, one trophy. I’m used to winning trophies. I didn’t come here to waste time,” he told MUTV.

"That is the first trophy game and that is the first trophy we will bring home. For me, every trophy is very serious. I have collected 30 trophies and I want to collect more of them. I’m not satisfied until I collect everything. That’s what we play for. I play to win.”

He might be enjoying an Indian summer after well over a decade at the very top, but the former Inter striker is also acutely aware that the clock is against him.

"Wherever I came, they also play to win. I didn’t come here to lose time. I came here to win. I believe the philosophy is the same for the club, especially a club like this. They are made to win.

"That is the way it is. The first game, one game and one trophy. I’ve played with the national team in England against Sweden and it’s a huge stadium so I’m looking forward to that also."

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