Zlatan Ibrahimovic has given the clearest public indication yet that he intends to stay at Manchester United next season after admitting he is in talks with the club.
Telegraph Sport reported last week that Ibrahimovic has said privately that he plans to trigger an option in his £250,000 a week contract to remain at Old Trafford for another 12 months.
The Swede, 35, has kept United fans guessing with a series of non-committal answers about his future in recent months.
But Ibrahimovic - United's leading goal scorer – has since dropped his guard by conceding he "never leaves a job unfinished", having previously stressed his determination to win the Premier League title with the club, who trail leaders Chelsea by 17 points this season.
"I’m a person when I go into something I put my head 200 per cent, and I do what I’m good at,” Ibrahimovic said. “I go in, I go for the kill and I go out.
"And when I go out there is no complaints, that’s what I do. I never leave a job unfinished.
"I always go in, do my job, and in the way that is a fair play, a fair deal, that is what I do.”
Asked specifically about staying at United, Ibrahimovic confirmed he was in discussions with the club. It remains to be seen if United grant him an improvement on his existing wages after an outstanding debut season in which he has scored 26 goals but there is thought to be the possibility of him being given the option of staying at the club for a third year after next term. "Let’s see what happens, we are talking," Ibrahimovic said.
“I have an option for another year, I want to do great as long as I’m here, so let us see, there is a lot of time.
"I’m enjoying being at a fantastic club, without doubts, one of the biggest clubs in the world with a great coach (Jose Mourinho). I know him before (from our time at Inter Milan), he’s a winner, he’s the perfect coach for this club.
"Being a Manchester United player, I don’t know how many people have that possibility but I am a Man United player, people wanted me here, I chose the club, I chose the best English club, that’s the way it works.”
Ibrahimovic will miss United’s crucial Premier League game at home to West Bromwich Albion on Saturday when he completes a three-match suspension for elbowing Bournemouth’s Tyrone Mings. Midfielder Ander Herrera is also suspended for the game and Mourinho confirmed on Wednesday that defenders Phil Jones and Chris Smalling in addition to midfielder Paul Pogba would be unavailable because of injury. Jones and Smalling were injured on international duty with England while Pogba suffered a hamstring strain in the Europa League tie against FC Rostov this month.
“We lose four [players] and I think Paul Pogba is also out," Mourinho said. "So we lose five."
Marouane Fellaini is expected to be fit, despite withdrawing from Belgium’s squad for the friendly against Russia with a minor toe problem, but Mourinho will have to assess the condition of Marcos Rojo and Antonio Valencia before determining their availability against West Brom. Although both emerged unscathed on international duty, Rojo played a full game in Argentina's 2-0 defeat by Bolivia in the draining altitude of La Paz, despite struggling with fatigue of late, and is unlikely to return to Manchester until later on Thursday.
Valencia also faces a long journey back to Manchester after playing a full match in Ecuador's defeat by Colombia in Quito. Wayne Rooney is expected to be available for West Brom after a minor knee problem but it remains to be seen if the United and England captain makes Mourinho’s 18-man squad.
Bastian Schweinsteiger travelled to the US yesterday (WED) to complete his move from United to MLS side Chicago Fire on a free transfer, despite having more than a year to run on his Old Trafford deal.