Striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic is not satisfied with just scoring goals for Manchester United, saying that he has not been able to create sufficient opportunities for his team-mates, and that in turn is not allowing him to feel like the complete player that he is.
“When I scored (in the Boxing Day 3-1 win over Sunderland) it was 50 (goals in 2016),” he was quoted as saying by AFP news agency. “That is not one of my objectives because if a player starts to focus only on scoring goals it means he’s focusing only on himself.
“Like I said, I’m not here to focus on myself because I’m here to help my team-mates win. The goals come in the second wave – the first wave is my team, the collective part that I want to win with them.
“If the collective does well, the individual will do well and I prefer to have it that way. If you know the way I play my game, I’m the one who scores or tries to help my team-mates score.”
The ex-Swedish international only created three assists for the club this season, and he picked the one to Henrikh Mkhitaryan in the Sunderland game as his best.
“That was perfect because I said to myself ‘if I put it a little behind him he can do the backheel’ – exactly like we have been training for these couple of weeks and it worked,” Ibrahimovic said.
“I was the one jumping higher than everybody else when we were celebrating! I was super happy, especially for Micki. I know how it feels to score a goal like that. I’m happy they (the officials) didn’t give it offside because a goal like that has to be (a) goal.
“I haven’t had many assists so far and that is part of my game that I’ve been missing here in my six months at United.
“At my other clubs I’ve been scoring goals but I’ve also done a lot of assists. I’m happy to give an assist because for me it is just like you have scored yourself. It’s part of my game and I have wanted to be as complete as possible in my game since I was young and started to play football.
“I want to be good at everything, not in one thing, so the assists will come. Some have come already but even more, will come.”