Zlatan Ibrahimovic has revealed that he told Manchester United manager, Jose Mourinho, to “select someone else” as he battled to regain his full fitness in his last months at Old Trafford.
The Swedish striker suffered a major knee injury in April 2017, but returned to play in seven games in November, before suffering a setback and ultimately signing for the LA Galaxy in March 2018.
“When I was ready, I said to myself ‘I am not there’.
“They had a Zlatan before. After, I was not ready to be that Zlatan.
“I was selected in many of the games but I told the coach: ‘Listen, I am not ready. I don’t want to disappoint you. The respect I have for my teammates and the coach. Select someone else who can do the job better.’ I stood up and did it, even if I am Zlatan,” he told the BBC.
Ibrahimovic had been out of contract after his initial injury, but signed a new deal that summer.
He insists his quick return was triggered by a desire to play, not money.
“The situation was not about having a contract and earning money.
“It was all the opposite. I said ‘I don’t want a salary, you keep it,” he added.
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