“So take a good look at my face, you see my smile looks out of place, if you look closer it’s easy to trace, the tracks of my tears.” – Smokey Robinson and the MiraclesWinning the FA Cup should have been a moment of respite for Louis van Gaal. In his final year in charge the Dutchman oversaw an unspectacular campaign at Old Trafford, serving up soporific football and little inspiration, dramatic tumbles in the presence of Mike Dean aside. Even after becoming the first United manager to lift silverware since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement, all the post FA Cup chatter was about the Iron Tulip’s imminent dismissal. Indeed, Van Gaal reportedly first got wind of his firing from his wife Truss who had read about it on the BBC Sport website. The Dutchman hadn’t even left Wembley.
So, Zlatan Ibrahimovic has re-signed for United and is back to finish what he started! I can’t wait for him to return, umm by the way when is that?
Well, if reports are to be believed he’s looking to play against Tottenham Hotspur when the Londoners visit Old Trafford on 28 October. To put that into context he suffered serious ligament damage in his right knee against Anderlecht in April and usually the recovery time is nine months to a year. United’s new number 10 could be playing football six months after sustaining a potential career ending injury.
The acquisition had long been flagged, even if the timing of Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s re-signing took many by surprise. Still months away from full fitness and courted by clubs in Europe and the United States, the Swede will return to the Manchester United squad as a back-up and not the main man. That much is reflected in Ibrahimovic’s new wage, which is less than half the amount that he earned last season. Yet, while the striker will not face Leicester City at Old Trafford on Saturday, his presence is already felt.