Coronavirus pandemic: AC Milan's Zlatan Ibrahimovic sets up online fundraiser for hospitals in Italy, donates $109,000
According to the website accepting donations, Ibrahimovic donated 100,000 euros to the fund. It quickly raised a further 15,700 euros
Milan: AC Milan forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic set up an online fundraiser on Wednesday to help hospitals at the center of the coronavirus outbreak in Italy, with the target of raising 1 million euros ($1.09 million).
According to the website accepting donations, Ibrahimovic donated 100,000 euros ($109,000) to the fund. It quickly raised a further 15,700 euros ($17,100).
The 38-year-old Ibrahimovic rejoined Milan in January from the Los Angeles Galaxy. He also played for Italian clubs Inter Milan and Juventus.
“Italy has always given me so much and, in this dramatic moment, I want to give back even more to this country that I love,” Ibrahimovic said in a video message to launch the fundraiser.
The former Sweden international added that he was counting “on the generosity of my colleagues, of all professional athletes and of those who want to make a small or large donation according to their possibilities, to kick this virus away.”
The site states that all the money raised will be “directly donated to Humanitas to help strengthen the intensive care and emergency units of Milano, Bergamo, Castellanza and Torino's hospitals.”
Italy has been the second hardest hit country with more than 31,500 cases of the virus and 2,503 deaths.
Ibrahimovic , known for his brash personality and outspoken comments, often refers to himself in the third person. He ended his message by saying: “And remember, if the virus don’t go to Zlatan, Zlatan goes to the virus.”
Serie A: Zlatan Ibrahimovic expected to return to Italy despite teasing potential move to Sweden's Hammarby
Ibrahimovic has been keeping up his fitness by training with Hammarby. He bought a nearly 25% stake in the Stockholm-based club last year in his first move into football ownership
Ibrahimovic, who went into quarantine two weeks ago when he first tested positive, must test negative twice before he can return to the Milan squad, whose next game is the derby against Inter at the San Siro on 17 October.
The Arsenal manager also believes that his side are realistically out of the Champions League after the 4-0 defeat against AC Milan.