CM: Only Cardinale holds more influence than Ibrahimovic at Milan – the details

By Ben Dixon -

Since Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s return to AC Milan, it has been clear that he has been in a role with significant power, as was expected when rumours of his return first emerged. Given several changes are expected in the summer, there has arguably been no better time for his return. 

When rumours first emerged about Ibra’s return to Milan, speculation about the conditions was rife, with several questioning how the club and RedBird could get the most out of the former striker, and in the months following, his importance has gradually shown.

Most recently, the Swede joined the club’s owner, Gerry Cardinale, at a conference with the Financial Times, and spoke about his early conversations that brought him back to the club, placing heavy emphasis on the ambitions he has to enter the different side of football.

“Gerry sent me a photo and made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. Cardinale opened doors for me, he gave me an opportunity in a different world that was not my ‘normal’ one. But I am excited, I have a lot of ambition. Everything is new, I am starting from scratch. I have so much to learn, so much to improve, but so much desire to do my best step by step. I’m focused on Milan.”

As reports, though, there are few differences between Zlatan as a player and an executive, given his reluctance to be an extra. This is not bad in this context, given Cardinale is based in America. Having someone as prominent as Ibrahimovic opens many doors for him and means he can be present at Milanello whilst still in America – which makes Zlatan his vessel for information and authority.

With Ibrahimovic acting in this role, Cardinale wants him to create partnerships with Geoffrey Moncada and Antonio D’Ottavio, and from there, the 42-year-old can be influential in several sporting matters, such as player signings and managerial areas.

The report states, though, that the Swede will not choose the players himself, instead being a reference point, and he will hold a weight in the decisive stages of deals, such as deciding to go for a certain player over another.

Furthermore, as has been speculated, he will hold weight in debates regarding the manager and is reported to be the deciding factor in Pioli’s future.

Tags AC Milan Zlatan Ibrahimovic


  1. It will be very interesting to see how the next mercato plays out. I hope we can sell some players mostly. But I feel we have something good to build on right now. We shouldn’t buy too many if we can’t sell a few. Musah for example would be a good sell as well as
    Chukwueze. And of course most of the loanees. Just bring back Colombo to be used as a third or fourth striker.

    1. Why would you sell Musah?
      His 1st season at Milan as a 20 year old, when he is used in his proper position, has been much better than Tonali’s 1st season at Milan as a 20 year old.
      I understand Chukwueze sale, but Musah shouldn’t go anywhere.
      I would rather sell Bennacer to upgrade the midfield. Bennacer isn’t someone you can count to be available to play. He is often injured. Cash in while you can.

      1. Upgrade? After 60 millions spent, Bennacer’s return is still the only quality upgrade this midfield receive this season.

      2. Yeah you have a point. But I just don’t see where Musahs real position is. He is quite similar to Saelemakers I think. He has some qualities of course but not much end product. By that I don’t just mean assists or goals, I mean he just doesn’t bring much to the game. He just runs with the ball and loses it. His passing percentage is only 80 %. And he is in the 6th percentile in passes attempted. With only 32 passes per 90 minutes. While he is in the 91st percentile for progressive runs. So I think he needs to do better or maybe we should at least think of selling him then.

        And yeah Bennacer needs to step up for sure.

      3. Musah is fckn great. Bro he’s 20. did u see how he destroys defenders with his runs? Give him little time he gonna be a big big asset to this team

    1. I don’t know what you can conclude from a Zlatan quote about nothing and a shady report with no evidence.

      Moncada is a former scout who started his career at Monaco, a trading club, and who is stockpiling cheap young player like Pellegrino, Musah, Romero, Terraciano, etc.? Yes. Milan is reportedly working with the very same guy who invented Moneyball in baseball? Yes.

      1. To be fair it was also moncada who found mbappe and signed him for monaco at the age of 14 and to add to that he is also one of the most highly regarded scouts in the game.

        1. @Martin Moncada didn’t find MBappe. Chelsea approached MBappe first and was even courted by Real who he got a free trip to see CR7 and . It really was Luis Campos that made the discovery as Moncada was using his vast scouting Network before developing his own. Signing MBappe at 14 is a no brainer at the time and in the world of the next best thing. It’s like me saying to a club….sign Camarda. MBappe was already a phenom by 14. He could have gone anywhere but chose Monaco. If you track the timeline correctly of Moncada’s time at Monaco, it wouldn’t add up.
          It’s probably why when they asked him who were his greatest scouting finds that he names ppl like Fabinho, Martial and so on. One would think MBappe would have been the first tname out of his mouth. He tends to get over credited for that.

          1. Well then there has been a lot of misleading articles over the years in regard of the matter because i remember moncada being mentioned but if you say its not the case i will take your words on it.

      2. Moncada is also the former scout who found Theo, Leao, Bennacer, Kalulu, basically every young player that was signed by Milan since 2019.
        Even though people like you, Maldini fans want to credit Maldini for them.
        The ones that turned good were Maldini signings, the ones that didn’t were, of course, Moncada’s, right?

        1. Please stop generalising, it’s not helping the debate. I agree with you and Martin that Moncada is a great scout, I’m grateful for our star players and I’m glad we have him. But I’m not a fan of having a scout at the helm of the club. It remains to be seen who will have the most influence on football decisions, between him and Zlatan, when Moncada will say “sell for sustainability” and Zlatan will say “spend money to reinforce the team”.

          First is trading, I don’t like it. That’s not my vision of Milan. They can say whatever they want but for now, after two transfer windows, I think it’s been a mess. Selling a key player to “draft” many guys with no certainty. Stockpiling young guys. Missing on many targets. Hopefully they’ll be more prepared next summer, but last winter was also loosy. I think we’ll have a confirmation of the moneyball policy.

          Second, I don’t trust Moncada. He is not the owner of the club, for what we know he doesn’t even have shares of the club. So he had no serious bond with the club. He probably receives commissions on incoming players that he found, maybe even on sold players. This is how it works in France. So his interest would be to buy and sell a lot of players. I can’t be sure about that, but this is how Monaco, Marseille, Lyon, Lille are working these days so it wouldn’t surprise me if Moncada has a clause like this in his contract.

          1. Oh, now you know what Moncada would say. I didn’t know you have worked with Moncada and know him so well.
            2nd , Moncada doesn’t have bond with the club!?
            What does that have to do with anything, and also he has been at the club for 5 years. I think he has ties now.
            How much bond did Conte and Marotta have with inter? They literally spent their life at inter most hated rival, Juventus. Did that stop them for being true professionals and perform at the best at their ability at Inter? I don’t think so. Inter has been the most successful Italian club since their arrival.
            Milan needs competent people in charge at their respective positions, not just people who have bond and emotional ties with the club. Based on your logic Milan should hire Milan fans.
            That’s why most of you are so butt hurt that Maldini and Tonali are not at Milan. Not because they were so good at their jobs but because they were fans.
            Tonali was an average midfielder who Milan sold for double than he was actually worth and people cry like Milan sold prime Pirlo.
            Zlatan and Moncada are inexperienced at their new jobs just like Maldini was.
            Check the great Maldini’s first season at Milan as a director. Prior to Zlatan’s arrival Milan was 11th on the table, with 21 points, 21 points behind the leaders inter and Juventus. Finished 6th that season after finishing 5th the season prior.

          2. 🔴⚫️ Even though i dont think everything is black and white then every ac milan fan should be a maldini fan by default both as a player and be greatful as well for what he achieved at the helm of the club so no need at all to make that sound bad either just as well as people shouldn’t make this entire management sound like they doesnt do anything good.

            Bartholomeoi i have to agree with 🔴⚫️ in regard of whether moncada has a bond with the club or that he isnt playing with open cards is clearly debatable and highly unlikely to not to be the case. They do the job they are paid to do.

            In hindsight it was smart to sell tonali due to his ban but just because people wasnt happy about it at the time doesnt means that they are butthurt either and to call him average is daft because he would step right into the team if he was still here and not banned.

            If Ibra has full power to make decisions wouldnt it be funny if he actually brought back maldini in some sort of capacity, I know it wont happen but just a funny little thought 😀

          3. that he isnt playing with open cards is clearly debatable and highly unlikely to to be the case. They do the job they are paid to do.

          4. I’m not sure I would characterize Moncada as being “at the helm of the club”. His title is still Chief Scout. Before there was a triumvirate of Maldini, Massara and Moncada, now there is Furlani, Ibrahimovic and Moncada, with Furlani and Ibrahimovic clearly above Moncada in the organizational chart. Not sure what all the hubbub is about.

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