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Zlatan Ibrahimovic opens up on Joshua Zirkzee comparisons following Manchester United decision



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Former Manchester United and AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic has fielded questions about Joshua Zirkzee’s potential transfer this summer.

Both Manchester United and AC Milan are seemingly fighting to secure the signing of 23-year-old Dutch international Joshua Zirkzee. Both sides want to add firepower to their front lines.

Erik ten Hag‘s men failed to score on many occasions last campaign, with Ramsus Højlund finishing the season as the side’s top scorer with 16 goals to his name – a far cry from the days of Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney, and even Marcus Rashford during 2022/23.

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic is a striker who scored 29 goals during his only full season at Old Trafford in 2026/17. The 42-year-old Swede now works as a close advisor to AC Milan, where he advises on footballing matters.

Ibrahimovic was asked if his club are aiming to sign a new striker this summer and how “far along” the Zirkzee talks were.

“Zirkzee is a strong player, he has potential, he had a great season,” Ibrahimovic told the media during a press conference. “The rumours going around are quite distant from the reality, whether we are close or far away.

Speaking further, Ibrahimovic was then asked if he believes that Zirkzee is a player who shows similar traits, to which, in Zlatan fashion, he claimed that no player is like him.

“Is Zirkzee like me? I don’t like comparing players; he not only plays well, but he plays very well. He comes from the Dutch school of football like me. Then I don’t know whether he is another Ibra or not. I’m Zlatan, and he’s Zirkzee.”

Other questions were then asked, but one journalist circled back to the Zirkzee comments, asking further why he remained so diplomatic on his original answer.

“There is a list of attackers that we study,” was his reply. A club like Milan doesn’t target one player, then you have to understand what the best option is.

“Then, even if he is strong, I want to see him face to face if he is ready to play under pressure.

“There are 80,000 fans at San Siro who are either booing you or cheering you or ignoring you. There are many factors involved.”

According to fresh reports from Italy, Zirkzee has decided to wait until after the conclusion of the 2024 European Championships to make any decision about a potential move to Manchester United or AC Milan.

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