Lukaku reveals important Man Utd lesson learned from Ibrahimovic

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The Belgian striker did not spend long working with an enigmatic Swede, but saw enough to realise what has to be done in order to stay at the top

Romelu Lukaku admits to having taken important lessons from the brief time he spent working alongside Zlatan Ibrahimovic at Manchester United.

The Belgium international striker was snapped up by the Red Devils in a £75 million ($99m) deal during the summer of 2017.

He was acquired by Jose Mourinho as the proven performer required to fill an attacking void at Old Trafford.

United had benefited considerably from the enigmatic talents of Ibrahimovic in the previous campaign, but the Swede was sidelined with knee ligament damage when Lukaku arrived.

A lengthy spell on the sidelines, and a short return to the Red Devils fold before heading to MLS with the LA Galaxy, meant that two powerful forwards saw little game time together.

They did, however, meet on the training ground and Lukaku admits to having welcomed the chance to see how Ibrahimovic has maintained a standing at the top of the global game for so long.

He told United’s official website of a frontman still going strong in America at the age of 37: “Everything I learned from Zlatan was great, from his stories that he told me when he was at Inter, AC Milan, Barcelona and even Ajax, to being on the field working with him, seeing how competitive he was.

“I remember one training session.

“Because we were both strikers, we were never on the same team and, at one point, there was a 50/50 challenge. He went full-on against me!

“That is when I knew this guy wants to compete and this guy wants to fight for his spot. That is why he changed me. It was an eye-opener. The guy had to fight to be in the position he is in.

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“So, I learned just to focus, work hard and enjoy it as well. Because he is a guy who you can have a lot fun with as well and having his personality in the dressing room was good.”

Ibrahimovic netted 28 times across all competitions in the 2016-17 campaign, including match-winning efforts in Community Shield and League Cup triumphs.

He would find the target just once in seven outings upon returning to the United fold after injury, with Lukaku having taken the striking mantle and the No. 9 jersey to record 27 efforts in his debut season.

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