He revealed that no one, not even his family knew the date of his retirement so that he could announce it at the same time to everyone. After returning in January 2020 to help AC Milan win the Serie A title, Ibrahimovic struggled with injuries, making just four appearances this season due to his recent knee surgery. After 22 years in professional football with 561 goals for club and country, the 41-year-old striker is finally ready to hang up the boots, knowing full well he will be remembered as one of the all-time greats.
Emotions ran high as a teary-eyed Ibrahimovic addressed a crowd of roaring fans holding a giant “Godbye” banner during the post-game ceremony.
“I want to thank my family. I want to thank my second family, the players. I want to thank the coach and his staff for the responsibility, I want to thank the directors for the opportunity. Last but not least, from my heart, I want to thank you fans,” he said. “You welcomed me with open arms and I will be a Milanista my entire life. It’s time to say goodbye to football, but not to you. It’s difficult, there are too many emotions.”
“I’ll see you around if you are lucky. Forza Milan and goodbye,” Ibrahimović said with his signature swagger before leaving the pitch.
“The time has arrived to say goodbye”.
We will miss you, forever and 𝐀𝐋𝐖𝐀𝐈𝐙❤️🖤
Good luck in retirement 👏 pic.twitter.com/vF0w3kCKU9
— Lega Serie A (@SerieA_EN) June 4, 2023
Verona fans were booing Zlatan as he gave his retirement speech.
So, he decided to roast them:
“Keep booing. This is the biggest moment in your year seeing me.”
— Barstool Sports (@barstoolsports) June 4, 2023
BREAKING: Zlatan Ibrahimovic has announced his retirement from professional football.
He was moved to tears as he bid farewell to AC Milan and the iconic San Siro stadium ❤️🖤
The Milan fans honoured Zlatan with a tifo which spelt out “GODBYE”
A true legend of the game 🐐 pic.twitter.com/RBQN8j2GeF
— SPORTbible (@sportbible) June 4, 2023
Elsewhere in sports, NBA will announce Ja Morant’s suspension decision after Finals.