After cup win, Mourinho hopes Ibrahimovic stays at United

LONDON (AP) — Six months into their first seasons at Manchester United, Jose Mourinho and Zlatan Ibrahimovic have collected their first winners’ medals.

Just how long this partnership of serial winners endures at United remains uncertain.

There’s little doubt Mourinho wants Ibrahimovic to commit to staying at United into next season, especially after the 35-year-old striker’s double clinched the League Cup with a 3-2 victory over Southampton on Sunday.

But Mourinho hopes the supporters will take direct action to convince the Swede to sign the contract extension the club has offered.

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“I never beg for a player to sign a contract,” said Mourinho, who previously coached Ibrahimovic at Inter Milan. “One day Zlatan decided to go to Barcelona. I was very sad but I did nothing to try stop him from going.

“So I don’t beg for players but if needed I think maybe United fans can go to the door of his house and stay there and stay there all night if needed. I think they will go for sure. “

Especially after seeing the veteran take his United tally to 26 goals while younger captain Wayne Rooney was relegated to a non-playing role on the bench at Wembley Stadium. Rooney reaffirmed his future to United last week, rather than moving to China before its deadline-day on Tuesday, but it is a commitment from Ibrahimovic that the club is keener to hear.

“We will believe that he is going to stay with us one more season,” Mourinho said.

Ibrahimovic’s first goal in the first final of the season came in the 18th minute, direct from a free kick. Jesse Lingard doubled United’s advantage in the 38th minute to add to his Wembley goals in the FA Cup final and Community Shield in 2016.

But United threw away its advantage as Manolo Gabbiadini scored either side of halftime to draw Southampton level in its pursuit of a first major trophy since beating United in the 1976…

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