The Swedish frontman has returned to the Italian capital with a renewed sense of purpose ahead of the new season, following a six-month spell
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has proclaimed that he wants to “bring AC Milan back to where it belongs” ahead of signing a new contract at San Siro.
Ibrahimovic scored 10 goals in 18 appearances for Milan after returning to the club on a six-month deal in January.
The 38-year-old saw the 2019-20 campaign through to its conclusion with the Rossoneri after disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic, helping Stefano Pioli’s men pick up more points than any other Serie A side post-lockdown.
Milan technical director Paolo Maldini revealed that the club have prioritised tying the Swede down to fresh terms ahead of the new season when quizzed on his future last week.
“We are working hard to reach an agreement,” Maldini told a press conference. “We will start the season in 20 days, we know that we will have a short time to prepare and our idea is to close the deal with Ibra soon.”
Ibrahimovic landed back in Italy on Saturday to link up with Pioli’s squad for pre-season, and confirmed that he will be spending at least one more year at San Siro.
— AC Milan (@acmilan) August 29, 2020
“I’m happy, I’m finally home. I’m here to bring results, not to be a mascot. I want to bring Milan back to where it belongs,” the veteran striker told the club’s official app. “Compared to last year, I have the opportunity to start the season from the beginning. I’m physically very well.”
Goal has learned that the former Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain star will commit to another 12 months with Milan, which will see him pocket €7 million (£6m/$8m) in wages.
Ibrahimovic’s performances lifted Milan to a sixth-place finish in Serie A last term, and they will now be expected to push on and fight for a return to the Champions League.
The Rossoneri are still awaiting the publication of next season’s fixtures, but have three friendlies scheduled against Novara, Monza and Vicenza over the next couple of weeks.
A new deal for Ibrahimovic has been a focus for Milan in recent days, with technical director Paolo Maldini saying earlier this week that the club were working on renewed terms.
“We are working hard to reach an agreement,” he told a pre-season press conference . “We will start the season in 20 days, we know that we will have a short time to prepare and our idea is to close the deal with Ibra soon. It’s normal to have a Plan B, even C and D, but we have priorities and Ibrahimovic is our priority.”