AC Milan's Zlatan Ibrahimovic out 7-8 Months After Knee Surgery; Undecided on Future

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVMay 25, 2022

REGGIO NELL'EMILIA, ITALY - MAY 22: Zlatan Ibrahimovic of AC Milan applauds the fans prior to the Serie A match between US Sassuolo and AC Milan at Mapei Stadium - Citta' del Tricolore on May 22, 2022 in Reggio nell'Emilia, Italy. (Photo by Chris Ricco/Getty Images)
Chris Ricco/Getty Images

AC Milan announced Zlatan Ibrahimovic underwent surgery on his left knee to address an ACL injury on Wednesday.

The Swedish striker's recovery is set to take around seven to eight months.

World football insider Fabrizio Romano noted Ibrahimovic's contract expires this summer and that he's unsure on whether he will keep playing.

The news comes only three days after Milan won Serie A for the first time since 2010-11.

Ibrahimovic is credited with playing a big role in that success. He had eight goals and two assists in 23 Serie A appearances, and his 0.71 goals per 90 minutes were the highest on the team, per FBref.

The 40-year-old also provided invaluable leadership to a club that had been lost in the wilderness. After placing third in 2012-13, Milan would go eight seasons before qualifying for the Champions League again.

Zlatan Ibrahimović @Ibra_official

I said I did <a href="https://t.co/elMymh4ELb">pic.twitter.com/elMymh4ELb</a>

Even before he underwent knee surgery, Ibrahimovic's age raised obvious questions about his status for the 2022-23 campaign in beyond. In an interview with ESPN's Gabriele Marcotti in early May—shortly before he suffered the injury—he acknowledged the end might be near.

"I'm in a situation now where I'm close to the goal line ... so I'm a little bit panicking," he said. "Because when it stops, what do you do? I know I can do a lot of things, I will have offers from all over the place. But the adrenaline I get on the field, I will never get that [from] something else."

If this is indeed it, Ibra capped off his career in a fashion befitting his legendary status.