AC Milan striker, Zlatan Ibrahimovic says he has never been satisfied with his performance and he always strives hard to get better each day.
The former Sweden international had hinted at a return to the national team for the Euros. He has been an important player for Stephano Pioli helping Milan stay on top of the log this season.
Meanwhile, the Diavolo has been struggling since his absence as they have recorded two draws and one win from three matches.
While revealing that he became a better player when he reached 30, the 39-year-old veteran admitted that he needs more sleep as he he gets tired quicker now.
Despite heading to the age of 40, Ibrahimovic insists he continues to push even harder at 39.
“I’m 39 and with what I have done, I have no obligation to work anymore, but I still have this passion for what I’m doing.
“I’m never satisfied, and I always want more. I don’t see a lot of players who are my age who were, or are, performing like I’m doing.
“The moment a player goes above 30 is [meant to be] when they start to go down and they quit. Above 30 is when I started to become even better.
“I hear athletes from [the] US say they spent more than $1m to keep their body in shape. I’m 39. I’m in shape. I perform at the highest level. I spend zero to stay in shape.
“The secret is not how much you spend, the secret is in your head – how much you want it, how much you’re willing to sacrifice.
“That’s the secret. It’s the mentality and mentality doesn’t cost anything,” Zlatan told UEFA.com.
Ibrahimovic is not ready to stop soon
Known for his trickery and impressive performance on the field of play, Ibrahimovic, who has scored 10 goals in 6 Serie A games this term, is not ready to hang his boot soon.
Knowing fully well that at his age, the rate of recovery from injuries will be slow, the Swedish won’t stop playing until he stops performing.
He is currently recovering from a hamstring injury. He was initially looking forward to a return to action against Sassuolo on Sunday, but he has been ruled out as he is yet to fully recover from the injury but has started training.
“I would like to have the brain of Zlatan in a 25-year-old body! I get tired quicker now, compared to when I was younger.
“I’m sleeping a lot because I need to recover more. Let’s say after the games, before it probably took me one day to recover and to feel good and really fresh.
“Now, I need between two and three days, which is normal at my age. And as long as I can perform, I will play at a high level. The day I stop performing, I will not play anymore because I need to feel alive.
“I need to feel I give something back. I don’t want to have any advantages because I’m 39 and they say: ‘hey, you slow down’ and that.
“No, I want you to consider me on the world-class level and compare me to everybody else, because then I push myself even more.”
Speaking of his former teammate and current Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, Ibrahimovic said the firmer Italian international can easily continue playing until he’s 50, than for him because he has to create and move around.
“For him, it’s easy: he just needs to stand still and block balls. I need to move around, I need to create, I need to be able to shoot, I need to be able to battle with the defenders.
“So, he can probably go longer without really staying in shape, but I would give him a hard game,” Zlatan continued.
Now that Ibrahimovic is ageing better than Benjamin Button, he could possibly sit out out the rest of 2020. This was because he struggled during the team’s training on Friday.
According to Skyesports, the striker complained about several problems related to the hamstring injury that has kept him out since the 3-1 win over Napoli.
Anyways, it won’t be a surprise to see Ibrahimovic on the pitch on Sunday because he is a lion who doesn’t give up.
Even if Pioli will want to risk him, the manager might decide to give him some minutes. The team is expected to make final decision on him today.