Done deal: PSG complete Zlatan Ibrahimovic signing
Zlatan Ibrahimovic will be unveiled as a Paris Saint Germain player on Wednesday after sporting director Leonardo confirmed the transfer of the Swedish star from AC Milan.
PSG have called a press conference for 5pm (UAE time) where Ibrahimovic and Marco Verratti, a €12million signing from Pescara, will be presented.
The acquisition ends a six-day transfer struggle by PSG who first lodged a bid for Milan pair Ibrahimovic and Thiago Silva last Thursday.
Brazilian international Silva, 27, accepted a five-year contract on Saturday, but Ibrahimovic, who is set to be paid €13m a year until 2015, took more convincing before deciding to leave the San Siro.
The total deal is set to be €65m with €42m for Silva and €23m for Ibrahimovic – taking the Swedish international’s combined transfer fees to nearly €200m in his career.
Leonardo said: “We have reached an agreement, the deal is done. Zlatan Ibrahimovic is a PSG player, he can write our history.”
Ibrahimovic only joined Milan on a permament transfer last summer, after spending the previous season on loan from Barcelona, but the Rossoneri have been forced to sell due to crippling debts, and the need to restructure their playing staff.
Ibrahimovic's agent Mino Raiola said: “Everyone is happy, and so is Zlatan. With the arrival of Ibra, Paris now has another reason to be considered a city filled with beauty.”
He added: "Now I think the people in Paris will have something else to see besides the Mona Lisa."
The decision by president Silvio Berlusconi and vice-president Adriano Galliani to cash in on their two best players has been met with understandable cricitism inside Italy.
Silva is now recognised as the world’s best central defender, and was wanted by Barcelona, while Ibrahimovic has netted 56 goals in 85 games for the Rossoneri.
Milan are expected to reinvest some of the money in Porto defender Rolando, Rennes centre-back Jean-Armel Kana-Biyik and Manchester City striker Edin Dzeko but the rest will be consumed by their debts of €400m.
Former midfielder Gennaro Gattuso said: “Without Thiago Silva and Alessandro Nesta, Milan have no reference points in defence. “Ibrahimovic, meanwhile, wins you 10 games a season on his own. If I was (coach Massimiliano) Allegri, I’d have trouble sleeping.”
Because of the stature of the Ibrahimovic-Silva deal, the arrival of Verratti is likely to slip under the radar. The Italian Under-21 international though was also wanted by Milan and Juventus and is among the Azzurri’s brightest prospects.
Verratti said: “In life, you have to make choices and this kind of proposal may never come again so I could not say no to PSG. The fact there are Italians there makes it easier for me in terms of the language.
"[Carlo] Ancelotti is one of the greatest coaches in the world and I am very happy to join this squad and work with him. I still have everything to prove but at 19 or 20 [years of age] it is possible to play for a big club.”
Top 10 Most Expensive Footballers Ever (combing transfer fees)
1. Zlatan Ibrahimovic €191.3m*
2. Nicolas Anelka €143.7m
3. Hernan Crespo €135.1m
4. Juan Sebastian Veron €130.7m
5. Cristiano Ronaldo €124.6m
6. Ronaldo €112.8m
7. Robbie Keane €109.2m
8. Christian Vieri €97.8m
9. Samuel Eto’o €95m
10. Robinho €95m
*includes estimated €23m for PSG transfer