Carlo Ancelotti is open to trying to bring Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Everton, although insists he has not spoken to the Swedish star about such a possibility.
Ibrahimovic is a free agent after leaving MLS side LA Galaxy earlier this year and the 38-year-old has been heavily linked with a return to Serie A, with Milan and Ancelotti’s former club Napoli reportedly interested.
However, with Ancelotti – who coached Ibrahimovic at Paris Saint-Germain – having joined Everton, the striker has been mooted as a potential transfer target for the Toffees.
Ancelotti says the door would be open should Ibrahimovic wish to visit Goodison Park.
“Zlatan Ibrahimovic is a good friend of mine, he was my player,” Ancelotti told reporters in a news conference on Monday.
“Fortunately I have trained a lot of good players, fantastic players. Ibrahimovic has finished his time in the United States but really I don’t know what is his idea.
“I really don’t know. I’d have to call him. If he wants to come here, wants to come, enjoy it, then he can come.”
He quickly added “but not to play!” in an apparent attempt to cool expectations of a move.
— Everton (@Everton) December 23, 2019
“I don’t know. But I’m not a manager that is used to working alone,” Ancelotti said when asked if his status as one of the world’s most successful managers would help attract a higher calibre of player to Everton.
“I want to speak to the club, we have to speak, have to work together to find the right solution.
“I don’t know whether it is helpful if some players want to come here because I am here. It has happened in the past sometimes. I think there are a lot of fantastic players, but it’s important to choose the ones important to our squad.”
Everton pulled off a coup in the close season when they signed Moise Kean from Juventus, though the youngster has so far struggled, failing to score in 16 appearances across all competitions.
The 19-year-old was also substituted off by interim boss Duncan Ferguson just 19 minutes after coming on during a 1-1 draw with Manchester United on December 15.
3 – Cenk Tosun is the third substitute to be substituted in a Premier League match this season – with all three instances being Everton players (also Moise Kean v Man Utd & Alex Iwobi v Man City). Fleeting. pic.twitter.com/u9n6u6n0CV
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 21, 2019
Ancelotti, however, is eager to help develop Kean, but warned it may take more time for the Italy international to adapt.
“Moise Kean did really well last year. We were involved when I was at Napoli in trying to sign him,” Ancelotti said.
“I think he’s a really good player with a lot of talent. He showed fantastic talent last year at Juventus even if he didn’t play a lot.
“We have to consider he’s 19, every player that changes country or teams needs a time of adaptation. We have to wait and work on him to improve his quality, be a better professional, but he has a top quality.”
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