Zlatan Ibrahimović’s time at Manchester United was cut short due to a serious knee ligament injury, however, with three trophies and 28 goals during his year at Old Trafford, it’s no surprise that Jose Mourinho was keen to bring the 35-year-old back.
Even more impressively, the Swede is said to have taken a 50% pay cut to return to the Reds. The forward has certainly fallen in love with United and will look to add to his haul of the League Cup, Community Shield and Europa League with Mourinho’s side. United are back in the Champions League and back competing for the title and who better to help them than one of the best forwards in the world?
Without Ibra’s influence, Mourinho’s men have already impressed in the league thus far this season. United ran riot against both West Ham and Swansea, winning each game 4-0, Romelu Lukaku, Paul Pogba and Anthony Martial all proving their worth in front of goal. It’s no secret that United struggled in front of goal last season, scoring just 54 goals, less than AFC Bournemouth to put that into perspective. The Reds also drew far too many games and that is ultimately the reason why they missed out on the top four.
However, with a fit Zlatan Ibrahimović, a hungry Romelu Lukaku and a young Marcus Rashford learning from the two, United will certainly put the fear of God back into Premier League sides and won’t experience shyness like that again. The fact they don’t have a mounting Europa League schedule to compete with will also help.
The Champions League draw was kind to Mourinho with the Reds drawing Benfica, Basel and CSKA Moscow, whilst it’s not the easiest group, it’s certainly not the toughest. Though, the same cannot be said for league rivals Spurs who find themselves in a group with Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and APOEL. Unsurprisingly, current holders Real Madrid are odds on with sports free bets to win the competition whilst United are level with City at 11/1 for European glory. The Reds are favorite to win their group and if their early league form is anything to go by, it’s a feat they should be able to manage with ease. Mourinho and Ibrahimović have enough Champions League experience between them to know what the competition requires and this, as well as the league title, is the trophy the Special One will be eyeing.
Ibrahimović is targeting an October return meaning that the forward may be fit in time for the Reds’ away clash with Benfica and their match away to fierce rivals Liverpool. And the new number ten would certainly love nothing more to get one over on Jurgen Klopp and his comrades by netting the winner in front of the Kop so maybe watch this space…