AC Milan owner Silvio Berlusconi has declared Zlatan Ibrahimovic the best striker in the world and insists that even if a gargantuan bid was received for the Swede, the club won’t sell due to the lack of an adequate replacement.
In a recent column, this writer contemplated a direct swap of Ibrahimovic for Edin Dzeko between Milan and English champions Manchester City.
Even if the swap wasn’t to be a realistic possibility, City and other elite European clubs have been repeatedly linked with Ibra but in an interview to reveal that Milan won’t sell highly rated defender Thiago Silva, Berlusconi took a similar stand over his big striker.
“Regarding Ibra, he will also remain because he is the best in his position,” Berlusconi confidently told Sky Sports Italia.
Meanwhile, Paris St. Germain Sporting Director Leonardo admitted that although his club saw a massive €46 million bid rejected for Thiago, they did not submit a bid of nearly twice as much to also include Ibrahimovic in the deal.
“I can assure everyone that we never spoke about Ibrahimovic. Our only real interest has always been Thiago Silva,” he asserted.
In the aftermath of an eventful week of transfer rumors surrounding the club’s highly valued assets, Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani paid tribute to Berlusconi for staying strong and retaining a future star like Thiago.
“I feel much better thanks to the president Berlusconi. I’m also a Milan fan and they (the fans) should thank Berlusconi. This was an act of heroism.
“By keeping Thiago Silva, Milan will lose a lot of money, even this year, and that’s money that Silvio Berlusconi will cover. The Milan fans must remember what the president has been doing for the last 26 years. His heart won the day,” Galliani concluded.
In Euro 2012 news related to Italian football, many members of the national team squad were left extremely frustrated after their 1-1 draw with Croatia yesterday.
While defender Leonardo Bonucci, midfielder Claudio Marchisio, and skipper Gianluigi Buffon described the result – earned for Croatia by the successful conversion of a rare threat created by in-form striker Mario Mandzukic – as a pity, head coach Cesare Prandelli conceded that he was annoyed by the outcome.
The Italians now need a win against Ireland in their last Group C match but even that won’t guarantee them progress to the quarterfinals if a potential draw between Spain and Croatia creates a three-way tie at five points apiece.