When it comes to Zlatan Ibrahimovic, it is worth bearing in mind that he will eventually find a way to bring most topics back to himself – and Italy’s Euro 2020 victory proved no exception.
Across spells with the likes of Juventus, Inter and AC Milan, the charismatic striker has spent a considerable amount of time in the Italian top-flight. The 39-year-old called Serie A his “second home” as he congratulated the nation on their triumph over England in an Instagram story on Sunday evening.
“Not bad to play in Serie A, my second home. Congrats, Italy,” declared Ibrahimovic on the social media platform, per football-italia.net.
In his following post, Sweden’s record goalscorer had some words for Italian goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma, with who he has spent the last 18 months as a teammate at Milan.
The 22-year-old was named Player of the Tournament at Euro 2020 – in part for his penalty heroics against both Spain and England in the latter stages of the competition. In total, Donnarumma just four goals in seven appearances in the competition – and never more than one in a single game.
In the final itself, Donnarumma saved spot-kicks from Jadon Sancho and – crucially – Bukayo Saka to ensure that Gli Azurri secured the second European Championships victory in their history.
“After one year with me, you have already understood. You are welcome,” wrote Zlatan alongside a picture of the young shot-stopper holding the Euro 2020 trophy, cheekily indicating that he wanted some credit for Italy’s win.
Of course, Ibrahimovic and Donnarumma are no longer colleagues, as the giant keeper departed Milan last month to join Paris Saint-Germain on a reported five-year deal. The pair do still, though, remain linked on some level, as they are both clients of super-agent Mino Raiola.
Zlatan had been due to represent his native Sweden at Euro 2020 before a knee injury ruled him out of contention in May. Nearing his 40th birthday, the tournament may well have been Ibrahimovic’s last opportunity to play at a major international competition.
They might be at opposite ends of their careers, but Ibrahimovic and Donnarumma both know how to stay cool under pressure and win big honours. In Donnarumma’s case, his European Championships winner’s medal is surely going to be one of many he collects over the coming years.