Sports

Zlatan’s Promise: A Title to Milan After 11 Years

In Feb 2022, a 40-year-old Zlatan said, “We are fighting to achieve this. I won’t quit until I have won something with this Milan side.” Three months later, AC Milan is the Serie A champion

After 11 long years, the Italian club AC Milan lifted the Serie A trophy by defeating Sassuolo on the final day of the league. One of the top clubs in the world of football, AC Milan for the last 10 years has struggled to repeat its glorious actions from the 1990s. Their last two Serie A trophies arrived in 2011 and 2004. Therefore, 2022’s win is historic for them and 40-year-old Zlatan who made a promise to the Rossoneris.

Last game 

Going into the final with a three-point lead over city rival Inter Milan, AC Milan needed a win against Sassuolo. The team in red and black jersey hammered the green team with three goals; two from old but legendary French striker Giroud, who opened the scoreline in the 17th minute and added another to his tally in the 32nd minute. Four minutes later, Franck Kessie cemented Milan’s win with another goal.

Not to forget, a brilliant wall of defence kept Sassuolo at bay who were visibly draught with 15 shots but only three on target and zero goals. The team had better statistics with 54 per cent possession, 416 passes, 86 per cent pass accuracy and eight fouls (less than Milan) but all their efforts went in vain as Milan thrashed them to secure the trophy.

Points table

To win the 19th Serie A title, AC Milan earned three-pointers from 26 games whereas lost four games and drew eight in the 2021/2022 season. The team collected 86 points to secure the title, whereas their city rival Inter finished in the second position with 84 points. Moving on to the manager, the team’s long Serie A drought was ended by manager Stefano Pioli.

Zlatan: More than a player

The season was a tough cookie for the 40-year-old Swedish player who missed most of the season because of several injuries. Nonetheless, his positive attitude and leadership, irrespective of not having the band, fuelled Milan to the historic run. In 23 games, Ibra scored eight goals and three assists, which is commendable given his age.

The last time (2011) Milan won Serie A, Zlatan was also a part of that squad. Therefore, his second stint with Milan is crucial for him because now that he has won another Serie A with Milan, he is likely to retire from football.

Last but not the least, after the win, Zlatan said, “If I manage to remain well, then it hasn’t been my last match. We’ll see what happens.”

Rohit Chatterjee

An alumnus of the Indian Institute of Journalism and New Media, Rohit Chatterjee is a bona fide moto-enthusiast who has worked with several media houses in his brief career. Chatterjee mostly writes features and news articles related to automobiles and motorsports. When not working, he is found on the interstate clocking over 100kmph on his NS200!
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