Zlatan Ibrahimovic did not take long to make an impact at Manchester United. Less than four minutes to be precise. In his first appearance in a Manchester United shirt, against Galatasaray in Gothenburg, the Swedish star scored the kind of goal for which he has been renowned throughout a glittering career.
From a cross from the right delivered by Antonio Valencia, the 34-year-old, who arrived on a free transfer from Paris Saint-Germain earlier this summer, sprung off the ground and found the top corner of the net with an acrobatic bicycle kick to the barely concealed delight of his new manager, Jose Mourinho. The fact that the strike came in Sweden, a country where he is already a national hero, only added to the perfection of the moment.
With many doubting whether Ibrahimovic is still capable of making an impact in the Premier League in the twilight of his career, he could not have wished for a better start. And after a disappointing Euro 2016 with Sweden, he has picked up right where he left off in his final season with Paris Saint-Germain, when he scored 50 goals.
Ibrahimovic had to wait for his United bow, having been given extra time off following Sweden's group stage exit in France, leading him to miss the club's preseason trip to China. But, along with several other players who featured in this summer's championship, he got his preparations for the new campaign underway at the Ullevi Stadium.
There has been much speculation surrounding how Ibrahimovic will fit into United's system and particularly how his presence will impact the role of captain Wayne Rooney. On Saturday, Rooney began supporting Ibrahimovic in attack, with another new signing Henrikh Mkhitryan on the right and French youngster Anthony Martial on the left. The early signs for that combination could not have been much better.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 30, 2016