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Ibrahimovic vows he is 'stronger than ever' on 40th birthday

FOOTBALL By Reuters | October 3rd 2021
September 12, 2021 AC Milan's Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates after the match REUTERS

AC Milan striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic treated himself to a gold Ferrari on his 40th birthday and vowed that he was "stronger than ever" as he nears a return from injury.

The Swede, who has an Achilles tendon problem, turned 40 on Sunday and joined his Milan team mates at the club's training ground ahead of their clash with Atalanta, where he was presented with a cake by technical director Paolo Maldini.

Ibrahimovic posted a photograph of the Ferrari on Instagram, alongside the message "Happy Birthday to Zlatan".

Last season's top scorer for Milan is targeting a return to action after this month's international break, insisting he was fighting fit and not even thinking about retirement.

"Now I want to play as much as possible," he told Milan TV on Sunday. "I don't feel like saying that I have reached the next step (retirement), I still feel stronger than ever, I can bring results and satisfy the fans.

"I am more relaxed, more calm, with a lot of experience. I have a different approach and behaviour because I have another role on and off the pitch. I enjoy it more, not doing everything at 200 miles per hour. I take my time."

Ibrahimovic signed a one-year contract extension in April that has taken him into his 40s in Lombardy.

Milan take on Atalanta in Bergamo on Sunday, looking to continue their unbeaten start to the Serie A season.

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