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11th Apr 2017

Robinho reveals how Zlatan Ibrahimovic ended his unhappy spell at Manchester City

This shows the clout Zlatan has...

Robert Redmond

This shows how much influence Zlatan has.

Remember Robinho?

The Brazilian forward was dubbed the ‘next Pelé’ when he was coming through at Santos and appeared destined for greatness when he joined Real Madrid aged 21 in 2005.

Three years later, he was playing for Manchester City.

Bear in mind, this wasn’t Manchester City in the current form. The club had just been bought by their oil-rich owners, and Robinho was their first marquee signing on deadline day of the 2008 transfer window, costing £32.5m.

At the time, it was a massive shock to football fans. And Robinho himself, who seemed to think he had signed for Chelsea.

“On the last day, Chelsea made a great proposal and I accepted,” the forward told a reporter, who replied:

“You mean Manchester, right?”. “Yeah, Manchester, sorry!” Robinho answered.

That gaffe was a bad omen, and it never worked out him at City, despite impressing in spells during his first season at the club.

By January 2010, he was back on-loan at Santos, and that summer he joined AC Milan for £15m.

However, if it wasn’t for Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Robinho’s unhappy spell in Manchester might have been extended.

Robinho was asked by Four Four Two to tell his best Zlatan story, and he revealed that his former teammate was the one who pushed for Milan to sign him in 2010.

“Milan’s former president Adriano Galliani told me that it was Zlatan who recommended they sign me,” Robinho said.

“He had respect from the board, having just signed there from Barca, which was when Galliani told him there was the chance of also getting me, too.

“According to Galliani, Zlatan then said, ‘go and bring him, he’s a phenomenon, we’re going to work well together and score the goals the team needs’.

“He used to joke with me, saying, ‘you are here today because of me.’ [Laughs].”

Ibrahimovic had only just joined Milan after an unhappy spell with Barcelona when he asked the club to sign the Brazilian.

The Manchester United striker and Robinho went on won to win the Serie A title that season.

Robinho is currently back home in Brazil with Atletico Minero. Zlatan could probably use his clout to get him a move to Old Trafford, but we doubt Robinho will be back in Manchester anytime soon.

Catch up with this week’s episode of 888sport Football Friday Live