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LA Galaxy general manager Dennis te Kloese has said he plans to meet with Zlatan Ibrahimovic to discuss the striker’s future, with a view to keeping him at the club.
“My deal with him, and I have known him for a long time, is to sit down with him after things have calmed down postseason and evaluate what is good for him, his family, his fitness and for us as well,” Te Kloese told ESPN Deportes.
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Galaxy’s season is over after they were defeated 5-3 by city rivals LAFC in the MLS Cup Western Conference semifinals. Ibrahimovic’s contract at the club expires at the end of 2019.
Ibrahimovic, 38, has made disparaging comments about Major League Soccer throughout the campaign, leading to strong rumours he would be leaving — which were followed a cryptic tweet by the former Barcelona forward about going to Spain.
“You all already know Zlatan,” Te Kloese added. “He is a topic all by himself, he is a unique character, with so many facets.
“And I think he helped us this year, basically and obviously, with the number of goals he scored, which was so impressive.
“And all of that we will be talking about, for sure, next week when he returns. He is a very mature athlete in that sense and so we will first and foremost be speaking like adults and after that we will determine what is the best for all parties involved.”
Earlier in the campaign, Ibrahimovic said Galaxy teammate Cristian Pavon was “too good for MLS” and that, should he leave “nobody will remember what MLS is.”
Ibrahimovic, who scored 30 goals this campaign had a long-running battle with LAFC’s Carlos Vela throughout the campaign and finished just behind the Mexico forward, who netted 34, in the Western Conference top goal scoring charts.
Asked which is the more valuable player, Te Kloese said: “I think they are two very different players, different clubs and they had a different impact. I would rather talk about our own club because the only thing Carlos and LAFC deserve is all my respect.
“I know their coach [Bob Bradley] very well, I worked with him a few years back. He manages very well. It is a new club, we went up against them three times this season. At the end of the day, we are trying to build ourselves up to be a bit more consistent with our results.”