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Swedish Legend Zlatan Ibrahimovic retires from football aged 41

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic retires from football. Photo/Sky Sports
  • Zlatan Ibrahimovic, a legendary Swedish and AC Milan striker, recently announced that he’s retiring from football at the age of 41.
  • The Scandinavian striker played just four times for Milan during a season marred by injuries.
  • Ibrahimovic is now sixth on his country’s list of all-time appearances and is Sweden’s all-time top male goal scorer.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic, a legendary Swedish and AC Milan striker, recently announced that he’s retiring from football at the age of 41.

The Scandinavian striker, who is regarded as one of the finest of his generation and one of Sweden’s all-time greats, played just four times for Milan during a season marred by injuries in 2022–2023.

Zlatan bids Ac Milan players goodbye Ac Milan

Zlatan bids Ac Milan players goodbye. Photo/Ac Milan

Ibrahimovic missed months after having knee surgery, but he made a temporary comeback for four Serie A games in February and March. On March 18, he started and scored in a 3-1 loss to Udinese.

The 41-year-old became the oldest player to ever score in the top division of Italian football with that goal, but he immediately returned to the medical area with hamstring and calf issues.

Ibrahimovic initially indicated that he wanted to play into the summer, but he later declared that he would be hanging up his boots after a somber ceremony on the San Siro field.

“The time has come to say goodbye to football,” the Swedish Legend declared.

After their 3-1 Serie A victory over Hellas Verona on the championship day, the striker addressed the audience and his colleagues, saying: “The first time we came to Milan, you gave me happiness; the second time, you gave me love.

READ: La Liga: Karim Benzema on target in Real Madrid farewell

The Swedish player made his name with Malmo before moving on to Ajax in 2001, where he won two Eredivisie championships as well as the Dutch Cup and Dutch Super Cup. Three years later, Juventus signed the player.

Ibrahimovic only stayed with the Old Lady for two years before leaving for Inter Milan in 2006, when they were relegated to Serie B. Between 2007 and 2009, he won three straight Serie A championships with the Nerazzurri.

Following Ibrahimovic’s acquisition by Barcelona for €69.5 million (£59.8 million), the club won the Club World Cup and the La Liga championship before Ibrahimovic made his debut with Milan in 2012, originally on a season-long loan.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Photo/ beIN SPORTS.

Ibrahimovic immediately followed with a trophy-laden four-year run at Paris Saint-Germain, where he scored 156 goals for the team and won three Ligue 1 Golden Boots. He then rejoined Jose Mourinho for a two-year stay at Manchester United from 2016 to 2018.

Ibrahimovic returned to Milan in 2020 and won a second Serie A championship in 2021–2022, although he never won the Champions League. At LA Galaxy, he rediscovered his knack for scoring goals.

Ibrahimovic is now sixth on his country’s list of all-time appearances and is Sweden’s all-time top male goal scorer with 62 goals in 122 outings.

His final appearance for Sweden was in March’s defeat to Belgium in the Euro 2024 qualifying match. The 41-year-old earned the Puskas Award in 2012 for his incredible overhead kick against England.

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