Ibra only had eyes for Barca
Swede says no other club could have prised him away from Inter
By Jamie Casey. Last Updated: 26/08/09 6:12pm
Ibrahimovic: New club
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has revealed that Barcelona is the only team he would have left former club Inter Milan for.
The Swedish striker was linked with a move to Barca's rivals Real Madrid before securing a club record move to the Camp Nou believed to be in the region of £58million, which included the transfer of Samuel Eto'o to the San Siro.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez was reportedly eyeing up the 27-year-old as he splashed out around £250million on building a new galacticos era at the Bernabeu, but Ibrahimovic admits his head was never turned.
"I had an agreement with my president at Inter that whoever came, whatever team came I want him to reject," said Ibrahimovic. "(But) I said if Barcelona comes, then you at least discuss.
"It's the club that can make me a better football player than I am today, I want to be part of this project and history that Barcelona is making now."
The classy forward could make his league debut on Monday as Barcelona prepare to launch the defence of their Primera Division title against Sporting Gijon at the Camp Nou.
The former Ajax and Juventus striker has been successful throughout his career, winning two Dutch titles before adding three Serie A medals during his three years at Inter.
"Wherever I went I won. I let my results talk for me," said Ibrahimovic, who admits there is pressure to deliver in his debut season in Spain.
"Of course there is pressure. You play for Barcelona. I had a lot of pressure also on me when I went to Inter, when I went to Juventus I also had a lot of pressure, wherever you go in top football you will have pressure.
"There should be pressure. If there is no pressure it's not a challenge."
Ibrahimovic will link up with Lionel Messi to form a potentially lethal partnership as Barcelona look to repeat last season's treble feat which included the league, Spanish Cup and Champions League.
The pair combined well in Sunday's 2-1 win over Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish Supercup as the Swede set up Messi for one of two goals and he feels they linked up naturally on their competitive debut.
"We are two players who like to create situations for each other. It is not difficult to play with a player like Messi," he said.
The Swede, who already speaks four different languages, is currently learning Spanish and Catalan to fit in at the club and although he is not fluent just yet, he insists there has been no breakdown in communication with Messi so far.
"With Leo I speak pretty good, pretty much football language. We understand each other," he said. "It's no problem at all."
"I believe I can use my qualities a lot more here than I did in Italy because it's totally different football in Italy."
With Real Madrid having invested so much into their squad this summer, many critics have suggested they are favourites to reclaim the Spanish title from Barcelona, but Ibrahimovic feels different.
"Real Madrid is a top club, they need to win. So what they do (is) they buy players to win," he said.
"But I'm coming already to a winning team so I think the advantage is with Barcelona. They (Madrid) have a lot of pressure. Everybody's waiting for the results."