zlatan Ibrahimovic retires from professional football at 41

Written by on June 5, 2023


Swedish Football legend Zlatan Ibrahimovic has announced his retirement from professional football following a glittering career laden with trophies. At the age of 41, he leaves Serie A giant AC Milan after the expiration of his current contract, but with a record of being the league’s oldest-ever goal scorer.

The star striker made the announcement following his team AC Milan’s season finale 3-1 victory over Hellas Verona on Sunday. The Swede arrived in Milan for a second spell in early 2020, having won the Scudetto with them in 2011, and helped the club win the title again last season.

After the match, an emotional Ibrahimovic told the Rossoneri fans at the San Siro stadium:

I say goodbye to football but not to you, the first time I arrived you gave me happiness, the second time you gave me love. I want to thank my family and those close to me for their patience. You welcomed me with open arms, you made me feel at home and I will be a Milanista my entire life.

For the moment, I just want to take some time and enjoy what I’ve done. It’s not right to make decisions in a hurry, there’s too much emotion right now. I want to take the summer off, reflect and then we’ll see.

The larger-than-life striker started his career at Malmo FF in 1999 and left for Ajax Amsterdam in 2001 before embarking on a journey that has included spells at Juventus, Inter Milan, Barcelona, Paris St Germain, Manchester United and Milan.

The Swede has won countless domestic leagues and cups plus a long list of individual honours but never got his hands on Europe’s elite club competition trophy, the Champions League.

He retires as Sweden’s all-time leading goal scorer with 62 goals in 121 international matches. He retired from international football after Euro 2016 but returned for Sweden’s failed World Cup qualifying campaign in 2021.

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