Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger: I tried to sign Sweden’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger reveals the Gunners tried to sign Sweden captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic when the striker was 16

arsene wenger
Zlatan Ibrahimović has made 85 appearances for Sweden Photo: Back Page Images

arsene wenger

Arsene Wenger has revealed Arsenal attempted to sign Zlatan Ibrahimovic when the Sweden captain was a teenager.

The 30-year-old scored four times in a 4-2 victory over England on Wednesday night, including a spectacular overhead kick from 30 yards at the Friends Arena.

Ibrahimovic has won numerous league titles with AC Milan, Ajax, Barcelona, Internazionale and Juventus, scoring almost 250 goals in a decorated club career.

And Wenger admitted the Paris Saint-Germain striker came to Arsenal’s training ground when he was 16 but returned home before completing a trial with the Gunners.

“He came here to visit the training ground,” said Wenger. “He didn’t want to make a trial because he was 16 years old at the time. He went home and we concluded to watch him again.

“I wanted to see him in training but it didn’t stop him from making a great career. In the end, he chose to go to Ajax Amsterdam. That happens. He’s not the only one in that case.”

He added: “The confidence he shows – if a performance isn’t there, you can say you don’t agree with it, but when a performance is there, you think his confidence is justified.

“Through his career, he has justified why he believes in his own talent.”

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