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Zlatan Ibrahimovic: A veteran striker making it big time in the Premier League

Sunday 18th December 2016
There has been a lot of talk about players, especially those playing in the Premier League for the very first time, needing some time to find their feet. Not for Ibrahimovic, however. He has continued to defy talks that he is past his best and is increasingly becoming Manchester United's go-to man.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic was signed on a free from Paris Saint-Germain in the summer and has hit the ground running since his first game for United.

No other outfield player in the Manchester United squad has played more minutes than the Swede [1440] despite him being 35-years-of-age.

The reason is simple: Starting Ibrahimovic up front guarantees you goals and more goals. Few strikers are as clinical as Ibrahimovic on his day. He has scored a total of 11 goals in the league alone. Averaging 4.6 shots per game.

He has fitted in at Manchester United effortlessly. He doesn't need to wear the captain's armband for one to know how big of a figure he is both on and off the pitch.

If you watched the game against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park on Wednesday night, you would notice Ibrahimovic, after scoring his goal in the final few minutes of the game, dropped into midfield to calm the tension there. It goes to show how selfless he truly is and how committed he is to see his side win.

Over the years we have seen veteran strikers leave the Premier League to lesser leagues in Asia and also the United States, mainly because the frantic pace which the League is played got to them. And the reverse is hardly ever the case.

Manchester United manager, Jose Mourinho, has lavished praised on the 35-year-old striker, saying it is next to impossible to drop him from the starting line-up. Speaking at his pre-match press conference ahead of the game against West Bromwich Albion the Portuguese manager had this to say about Ibrahimovic:

"He's doing phenomenal and [on Saturday ] he's going to play again," he said. when asked if it was impossible to drop Ibrahimovic ahead of the weekend's trip to The Hawthorns.

"He's a great example to be honest in every aspect, he's very professional. Even when it's difficult in today's football player's lives."

He went on to add that Ibrahimovic alongside Micheal Carrick are excellent players who would help in the development of younger players.

Ibrahimovic was instrumental yet again in the 2-0 win over the Baggies. His double lifted the Red Devils to within 3 points of fourth-placed Manchester City, albeit momentarily.

Before the win, the former Sweden international told BT about how he feels like a "20-yead old boy" amidst suggestions that he is playing far too many games at his age.

"I'm here. I'm here to play. I want to play. As a football player you get blind sometimes because you have to listen to your body. In my mind, I'm fresh, I'm like a 20-year-old boy. I feel fresh, I feel good and I will keep going. As long as he (Mourinho) needs me and the team needs me I'm here."

Overall, Ibrahimovic has been a wonderful addition to Manchester United and seems to be enjoying his time in Manchester.

Up next for Manchester United and Ibrahimovic is a game against Sunderland at Old Trafford on boxing day.
Adoyi Joshua Adoyi

Adoyi is a Nigerian with a keen passion for sports  - more so football and is an avid supporter of Manchester United. He spends his weekends glued to his TV screen, watching the beautiful game.

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