MANCHESTER UNITED have emerged as the clear favourites to sign Zlatan Ibrahimovic after Paris St Germain confirmed the 34-year-old is leaving the club when his contract expires at the end of the season.
“I am very proud,” Ibrahimovic said as he announced his time in France is coming to an end after four years. “I came like a king, I leave like a legend.”
The striker has enjoyed an outstanding campaign and there had been talks about a 12-month extension – but terms could not be agreed, with the Swedish star asking for £300,000-a-week after tax.
The Daily Telegraph reports: “While it is unclear whether United are prepared to pay that much – which would make Ibrahimovic the highest-paid player in the Premier League – it is understood that his agent Mino Raiola has been in extensive talks and the finances are not a stumbling block.
“United would regard Ibrahimovic as a significant short-term signing given his ability, personality and global appeal especially with Pep Guardiola taking over at neighbours, Manchester City.”
Ibrahimovic has a number of other offers – including one to become the marquee player for the emerging Chinese Super League which would have paid him £1million-a-week.
But it appears the superstar wants to continue in one of Europe’s top leagues and he believes he can meet the physical demands of the English game.
However, his final destination could well depend on who is in charge at Old Trafford next season.
Ibrahimovic enjoyed a strong relationship with Jose Mourinho – he was part of the Inter Milan side that won the Italian title in 2008-09 – who is favourite to become the next United manager should Louis Van Gaal leave at the end of this season.