Monday, September 24, 2018

Ibrahimovic departs Europe with remarkable haul of league titles

SoccerNews in Eredivisie 23 Mar 2018

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic heads to MLS with LA Galaxy as one of the most decorated players in the history of European football.

Never shy about highlighting his own achievements, Ibrahimovic has conquered leagues including the Eredivisie, Serie A, LaLiga and Ligue 1 during a memorable career.

Ibrahimovic may have been unable to end his time in England on a high with another league title at Manchester United, but helping the Premier League giants to the EFL Cup and Europa League double was a fitting end to his European career.

The 36-year-old now gets a fresh start in the United States – but exactly how much has he won during his playing career so far?

 

AJAX 2001-2004

Ibrahimovic started his career in his homeland with Swedish side Malmo, but there were be no trophies for the young tyro at his first club. In fact, Malmo were be relegated from the Allsvenskan despite the presence of a young Ibrahimovic, who rejected the offer of a trial at Arsenal as a teenager. After helping Malmo win promotion, Ibrahimovic earned a move to Ajax, where he won the Eredivisie under Ronald Koeman in his first season. Ibrahimovic’s goals also fired Ajax to the quarter-finals of the Champions League, but he left after clashing with team-mate Rafael van der Vaart during an international friendly.

Trophies: Eredivisie x2 (2001-02, 2003-04), KNVB Cup (2001-02), Johan Cruyff Shield (2002)

 

JUVENTUS 2004-06

Ibrahimovic headed to Italy in August 2004 and hit 16 league goals in his first season for Juventus, helping the Bianconeri to win the Scudetto. Juventus defended their title in the following campaign, although Ibrahimovic was less effective in front of goal due to taking a withdrawn role. However, a match-fixing investigation led to Juve being stripped of both titles and they were relegated to Serie B, with Ibrahimovic then leaving Turin.

Trophies: Serie A x2 (2004-05, 2005-06) – both stripped from Juve after Calciopoli scandal

 

INTER 2006-09

Juve struggled to keep their best players following relegation, with Ibrahimovic among an exodus of star names. The Sweden striker headed to Inter – who he described as his boyhood club – in August 2006. Inter cruised to the title in Ibra’s first season and the Nerazzurri went on to win the next two Scudetti in a golden era. Ibrahimovic, arguably at his peak, also collected a pair of Supercoppa Italiana winner’s medals during his stay. But after hitting 25 league goals to claim the Capocannoniere crown in the 2008-09 season, Barcelona came calling.

Trophies: Serie A x3 (2006-07, 2007-08, 2008-09), Supercoppa Italiana (2006-07, 2008-09)

 

BARCELONA 2009-10

Ibrahimovic headed to Barcelona next, with Samuel Eto’o moving the other way as part of the deal. And he maintained his run of winning consecutive league titles with the Liga crown, having triumphed in the Supercopa de Espana on his debut. Barca pipped rivals Real Madrid to the title but Ibra’s influence faded as his relationship with coach Pep Guardiola broke down. Despite only being at Camp Nou for a year, Ibrahimovic won five trophies including the UEFA Super Cup and FIFA Club World Cup.

Trophies: LaLiga (2009-10), Supercopa de Espana (2009. 2010), UEFA Super Cup (2009), FIFA Club World Cup (2009)

 

AC MILAN 2010-12

A return to Italy beckoned, with Ibrahimovic joining Milan on loan, although he missed a penalty on his debut for the club, a 2-0 loss to Cesana. Ibrahimovic’s first Milan season was dramatic – he was given a three-match ban for punching Bari defender Marco Rossi – but the Rossoneri beat rivals Inter to the Scudetto with the striker scoring 14 league goals. The Supercoppa Italiana followed but Ibrahimovic’s amazing streak of successive league titles ended in the 2011-12 season, Milan finishing second behind Juventus despite his 28 goals earning him another Capocannoniere.

Trophies: Serie A (2010-11), Supercoppa Italiana (2011)

 

PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN 2012-16

Ibrahimovic was ready for a new challenge in 2012 and he opted to move to Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain, where he became the club’s record goalscorer over four typically impressive seasons. PSG won the league in each of Ibrahimovic’s campaigns at the club, picking up a further eight cups, although European success continued to elude the Sweden international. Zlatan was named Ligue 1 Player of the Year three times, topping the scoring charts in three of his four seasons. Ibrahimovic left at the end of his contract, having scored 156 goals for PSG in all competitions, although Edinson Cavani would later eclipse that tally.

Trophies: Ligue 1 x4 (2012-13, 2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16), Coupe de France x2 (2014-15, 2015-16), Coupe de la Ligue x3 (2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16), Trophee des Champions x3 (2013, 2014, 2015)

 

 

MANCHESTER UNITED 2016-18

Ibrahimovic had never played in the Premier League, so it was little surprise he took the chance to head to Manchester United. Ibrahimovic scored the winner on his debut to help United claim the FA Community Shield, and he was also influential in the EFL Cup final defeat of Southampton at Wembley, hitting a brace. But a serious knee injury ruled Ibrahimovic out of the end of the season and he missed United’s win over former club Ajax in the Europa League final. Ibrahimovic committed for a further year but injuries restricted him to seven appearances in his last United season, leading the club to cancel his contract early to enable the striker to join Galaxy.

Trophies: Europa League (2016-17), EFL Cup (2016-17), FA Community Shield (2016)

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