In tears, Ibrahimovic (41) announces he is quitting: ‘Say goodbye to soccer’

In tears, Ibrahimovic (41) announces he is quitting: ‘Say goodbye to soccer’

NOS Football

There seemed to be no end in sight to Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s playing career, but the now 41-year-old Swede has now really decided that he is saying goodbye to professional soccer.

“I am saying goodbye to soccer, but not to you,” he spoke emotionally Sunday night after being cheered by the crowd at San Siro following AC Milan’s 3-1 victory over Hellas Verona, on the final match day of Serie A.

“The first time I came here, you gave me happiness,” Ibrahimovic addressed the crowd. “The second time I came, you guys gave me love. You welcomed me with open arms. I will be a Milanista all my life. It’s time to say goodbye to soccer. Forza Milan and goodbye.”

Ibrahimovic’s contract expires at the end of this month and will not be renewed after a season in which the striker was plagued a lot by injuries. As a result, the colorful but also successful footballer decided that enough is enough.

First title with Ajax

Ibrahimovic was in his second stint at Milan since the early 2020s, helping the ‘Rossoneri’ to the Italian title in 2022 as well after 2011. They were by no means his only national championships. He experienced no fewer than 12, starting in 2002 with Ajax, which had plucked him away from Malmö FF at the age of 19.

After that, the 122-time international played successively for Juventus, Internazionale, FC Barcelona, AC Milan, Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United, LA Galaxy and again AC Milan. In 121 international matches for Sweden, he scored 62 goals.

Kayleigh Williams