Ibrahimovic and Milan at the terminus, the hypotheses for 2020-21
Milan and Ibrahimovic seem destined to separate and for the Swedish scenario could open in the Premier League, with the suggestion of Naples
The return to Serie A of Zlatan Ibrahimovic had inflamed the first part of 2020 until the stop for the coronavirus. Milan’s intention to bring the Swede back to our league was to go back to a fourth place that would have been difficult but his presence on the attack made the Pioli team’s offensive game step forward, see for example the prolificacy by Rebic. As we will see in another article, the forced break generates problems at all levels but from a physiological point of view, it is the players who are older with the risk of paying a higher price for inactivity. Ibrahimovic, already back from an injury not easy to dispose of, goes towards the age of 39 and if the season had continued regularly the question of his possible withdrawal at the end of the championship would have been legitimate. The risk of not seeing Serie A until September and its zero parameter status from June 30, or the date that will be defined, are elements that lead us to think that his farewell to football will not be decreed by the pandemic but we will see him again on the pitch next season. Where it is not yet clear, but it will almost certainly not be at Milan.
Odds next team Ibrahimovic 2020-21
Milan’s corporate turmoil is on the agenda. The farewell to Boban, Maldini’s frictions with Gazidis, the bench that will save Rangnick’s surprises without any part of the leadership having had a say in the decision, are elements that push Ibrahimovic away from Milan once the loan has been completed. It could mean playing the rest of the season in the red and black shirt if the championship resumes, or that we will no longer see him on the field with Milan if this season is archived as it seems increasingly likely and will start again with 2020-21. In winter Ibrahimovic proved to be still competitive for European football, a news that is not at all obvious for a player who had been missing from the continental stages for over two years. These are his recent statistics.
2016-17, Manchester United – 28 goals in 46 games
2017-18, Manchester United – 1 goal in 7 games
2018, Los Angeles Galaxy – 22 goals in 27 games
2019, Los Angeles Galaxy – 31 goals in 31 games
2019-20, Milan – 4 goals in 10 games
The Swede recently quoted Michael Jordan in The Last Dance (‘if you don’t like playing with a winner then don’t play’) fueling the hypothesis of his future far from San Siro. The two sides will try to solve the knot within a month, so that Milan can plan the next market and Ibrahimovic will evaluate the offers for another year as a player, presumably the last of his career. At the moment, even according to non-Italian bookmakers, there are no privileged main destinations but only clues. The first possibility leads again to the Premier League, with Chelsea and Arsenal who could take advantage of his zero parameter status to reinforce the squad with an attacker able to make a tangible contribution to teams that will be engaged in numerous competitions and perhaps will have to face to a compressed calendar that will cause fatigue and injuries. The second door to Naples, which had been a possible destination even before his return to Milan with Giuntoli and De Laurentiis who had long courted him. The knot here would be on the engagement, given that the Azzurri would struggle to compete with the chances of the English teams, especially with the economic crisis looming over Italian football. There is also the German route, a landing in the Bundesliga which among the leading European championships could be the one that has the most chance of not encountering obstacles from the health point of view for this and the next season. More difficult, though not impossible, the return to Spain. Certainly not in Barcelona and not even in Real Madrid, but teams like Atletico Madrid and Seville may have the temptation to focus on him also for the Swedish media power, one who has had a distinctive trait in his career as a result of effective communication. Other options reported by the Italian press are a move to Bologna, with Mihajlovic fueling rumors of goodbye to Milan, but quickly denied by the club, and a return to Sweden where he could end his sovereign career at home.