Latest reports hint Zlatan Ibrahimovic could be leaving Milan at the end of the season. Who are the potential names that could replace the big Swede at San Siro?
Ibrahimovic’s contract with Milan will end once the season is finished. What he will do next remains uncertain as he has given no sign on what his plans are. Milan have an option to extend his deal for a further year, but doubts continue to grow on Ibra’s future. The latest reports suggest the Swede’s relationship with the club board has deteriorated.
Zlatan apparently had a heated discussion with Milan CEO, Ivan Gazidis, over his running of the club last week. While nothing has been confirmed yet, the Italian press expect him to leave. His most likely destination could be Swedish club Hammarby, which he owns a share in.
Following these events, Milan have decided to search for options to replace Ibrahimovic should he really leave. Two possible ready-made options are Rafael Leao and Ante Rebic, who are both already Rossoneri players. However, it appears the club board would prefer to sign a new face if possible.
Here are four names that could replace Zlatan Ibrahimovic at the San Siro.
Last one for tonight.
Milik has been touted as a target if Ibrahimovic leaves. Good signing?#ForzaMilan 🔴⚫️
— Milan Talk (@MilanTalk1) April 6, 2020
As per reports, €40M-rated Napoli forward Arkadiusz Milik is currently at the top of Milan’s shortlist.
With his contract expiring in 2021, the Poland international is an experienced profile who is nonetheless arguably in his prime, and for this reason he represents an opportunity given there is seemingly little chance of renewal. Also, adaptation issues should not be a problem considering he has been playing Serie A football already.
The Rossoneri could provide Milik with a starting spot and the club would certainly be a welcome destination for the Pole. Napoli director Aurelio De Laurentiis, however, is not willing to make any discounts on their€40M valuation of the forward . Milan could try to propose some player in return, for example Hakan Calhangolu, but it remains to be seen if this would be a welcome option for Napoli.
Milan’s options for the attack:
Jovic is the first objective
There is interest in Azmoun
Talks took place with Raiola for Myron Boadu and Donyell Malen https://t.co/NuNXSmabUe
— Milan Eye (@MilanEye) May 30, 2020
Another reported favorite to replace Ibrahimovic is AZ Alkmaar star Myron Boadu. The 19-year-old is a natural-born goalscorer, who has caught interest from all over Europe. He keeps a cool head in front of goal and is lethal from deep.
Boadu has even played for the Dutch national team, scoring on his debut against Estonia last November, and played a big role in AZ’s bid for Eredivisie glory this season.
The teenager is clearly a star for the future and will surely leave his homeland soon. For Milan to sign him, however, they must act swiftly considering the growing interest in him.
— The Real Champs (@TheRealChampsFS) June 13, 2020
Should Milan fail to sign Boadu, then they’ll likely turn their attention to Luka Jovic.
The Serbian striker hasn’t lived up to expectations at Real Madrid following his €60M transfer last summer. Memories of his breakthrough campaign at Eintracht Frankfurt last term are fading away fast.
Part of Jovic’s struggles has been gaining regular starts under Zinedine Zidane. The French coach prefers his compatriot Karim Benzema, who took on the goal-scoring mantle following Cristiano Ronaldo’s exit in 2018. But while it’s unlikely Real Madrid plan to sell Jovic already, the Spanish giants could allow him to go on loan. It may grant him an opportunity to rediscover his best form.
Reports have suggested Milan would certainly be interested in bringing the 22-year-old over to the San Siro. A loan move isn’t a bad idea either, as it gives them a chance to evaluate him for an insignificant price.
The former Manchester City striker is a proven talent in the Serie A, having starred in the Italian league for almost five seasons. Therefore, Milan would surely love to sign him.
Dzeko has proven over the years that he can score against anyone at anytime.
Inter boss Antonio Conte was keen to sign him last summer as part of his title bid for this season. A move to the San Siro, however, fell through. Inter’s loss could be Milan’s gain, though.
Former Rossoneri striker Alberto Gilardino fired up the speculation by urging the club to sign Dzeko as a replacement for Ibrahimovic.
“Should they not continue with Ibrahimovic, I would take Dzeko,” Gilardino recently said in an interview. “He’s one of the most complete strikers out there. Right, left, very strong on the head and he builds attacks. Maybe he wouldn’t score as much, but the manoeuvre would benefit.”
His age at 34, however, means the Bosnian would most likely come as a last resort option for the Rossoneri.