Zlatan Ibrahimovic has revealed he turned down offers from other clubs to re-sign for Manchester United and has welcomed the arrival of Romelu Lukaku.
Ibrahimovic, who was speaking to ESPN, refused to put a date on his comeback from a cruciate knee ligament injury but sounded confident of beating initial predictions of a nine month absence from a setback suffered in April.
The Swedish striker, 36 in October, has penned a new one-year deal at United having scored 28 goals in 46 games last season and will wear the No 10 shirt.
Below is the full transcript of the interview
Do we have an official Zlatan comeback date? There’s rumours of Christmas time…
I don’t know. I feel good. There are some people without even knowing my injury talking one year, nine months… I take it day by day. When I am ready I am ready and when the day comes I will be more than ready because it’s nothing about coming back and playing at 50 per cent, 80 per cent, because I don’t want to have any excuses when I’m on the field, like ‘he has been injured, he has just come back’. When I’m back I’m back. I want to have the same pressure like every year I’ve had an the same expectation like always.
And when you’re ready you’ve chosen to come back to Man United. Were any other teams a consideration?
There were a couple of teams reaching out who wanted to have Ibra-cadabra in their team… but I had such a great year with United. We had a great season, we won three trophies, fantastic guys, a great club, a coach that I know from before and my family was happy.
It’s not always about the sporting thing you chose when you sign for a club. I’m in a situation where I have to think 360 degrees around me, so everybody is happy like this and I am super happy. Happiness has no value, so this year I play for free just like last year.
You won’t stop until you get a Premier League title will you?
I come back to finish what I started.
Romelu Lukaku is a new signing there. Are you looking forward to playing alongside him?
I’m happy he came. I think the team is much stronger this season than last season. Obviously we lost Rooney who is a legend for the club but we took three new players and with these three new players the team is stronger. From the first year going the team has been winning some trophies and learning the sacrifices you have to make to win the trophies and the mental part. That is what I think the coach brought in the team, the mental thing, and me as a player also, the pressure you put to win the objectives you want to win. Signing Lukaku makes us even stronger because he has different qualities from me as a striker and Rashford as a striker. He is a powerful guy and he will bring some extra quality in the game.