The veteran attacker says the challenge to return from a serious injury was one that has fuelled his desire to win more silverware at Old Trafford
Zlatan Ibrahimovic is nearing a return to action with Manchester United and is determined to win the Premier League, declaring: “I have come back to finish what I started.”
Ibrahimovic helped Untied to Community Shield, Europa League and EFL Cup glory in his first season in Manchester but a serious knee ligament injury cut short an impressive campaign before the 36-year-old became a free agent.
After convincing manager Jose Mourinho and United’s hierarchy of his ability to return to full fitness, Ibrahimovic has returned on a one-year deal and the Swedish striker only has one thing on his mind.
“I said I have come back to finish what I started,” Ibrahimovic – tipped for a December comeback – told Sky Sports , with United second and five points adrift of leaders Manchester City heading into Saturday’s visit of Tottenham.
“Everything I built up in the first season – obviously we won the three trophies – the ending for me was not the ending I wanted, or nobody wanted, especially after how the season went.
“The target is the Premier League. That is my target to finish.
“Everything I started in the first season, we will finish in the second one.”
Former Paris Saint-Germain, AC Milan and Barcelona star Ibrahimovic scored 28 goals in all competitions in 2016-17 but the injury sustained against Anderlecht in April cost him his involvement in the Europa League final and also raised doubts over his future in the game.
“In that moment when it happened, it was easier for me to say that I would come back because then I had a challenge,” added Ibrahimovic.
“The challenge was that I never had a major injury, and all these people talking that ‘it’s over’ or ‘he’s too old’, all these doubts that I had in my whole career.
“When that happens, it triggers me because it gives me energy and an objective. I’m challenging what I am able to do, how far I can take my body.
“In the last years, when you’re thinking how many more years you are going to play, that is where you are hesitating. But the injury made it easy for me. I had one target, and that is to come back and play the game.
“I will walk out just as I came in, I will not walk out limping. I will walk out the way I want to walk out. Even if I have to walk on water, I will do that also.”