08.07.2020 Europe

Zlatan says he's the man after Milan recover to stun Juventus

By Paul Myers - RFI
Zlatan says he's the man after Milan recover to stun Juventus
LISTEN JUL 8, 2020

Zlatan Ibrahimovic anointed himself the hero after inspiring an AC Milan comeback against Juventus at the San Siro.

Following second-half strikes from Adrien Rabiot and Cristiano Ronaldo, Juventus appeared set to extend their lead at the top of Serie A to 10 points after second-placed Lazio's 2-1 earlier loss at relegation-threatened Lecce.

But 38-year-old Ibrahimovic converted a 62nd minute penalty - his sixth goal since rejoining Milan from LA Galaxy on a six month contract - to halve the deficit and the Swede set up Franck Kessie for the equaliser four minutes later.

Ibrahimovic then headed to the substitutes bench where he spent the rest of the match bellowing advice to teammates as Rafael Leao and Ante Rebic added goals to complete the transformation.

"I'm president, coach and player but I'm only paid as a footballer," Ibrahimovic told broadcaster DAZN after the game. "If I had been here from the start we'd have won the Scudetto."

He added: "I'm old, it's no secret. But it's just a number. I feel good, to be honest, and I am trying to help the team in every way.”

Despite the defeat, Juventus remain on course for a ninth consecutive Serie A title. They are seven points ahead of Lazio with seven games left. 

"I think our first 60 minutes were world-class," Juventus boss Maurizio Sarri told DAZN. "We were in total control and had this blackout. There's not even much use thinking too much about it, because we have another game in three days.

"The defence was fine up until the 62nd minute, as we didn't allow Milan a single chance before then. The blackout hit everyone. You can change all 11 players at that moment and it won't make a difference."

The victory took Milan into fifth - the berth leading to next season's Europa League. 

However Roma and Napoli can leapfrog Milan on Wednesday night. Sixth-placed Roma entertain Parma at the Stadio Olimpico while Napoli play at Genoa who fell into the drop zone following Lecce's surprise win over Lazio.

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