Carlo Ancelotti
Carlo Ancelotti (left) and Zlatan Ibrahimovic worked together at Paris Saint-Germain Getty Images

Bayern Munich boss Carlo Ancelotti has hailed Zlatan Ibrahimovic as the best 34-year-old player in the world football. The Italian has been linked with a move for the out-of-contract forward and speaking ahead of Sweden's Euro 2016 fixture against the county of his birth, Ancelotti has lavished praise on the record-breaking star.

Ancelotti worked with Ibrahimovic during his time in charge of Paris Saint-Germain and has hailed his winning mentality and impressive physical condition.

"The thing about Ibra is this is a guy who always wants to win. I hear people saying that in some games he looks like he isn't trying," Ancelotti told The Telegraph, amid rumours linking Ibrahmovic to Manchester United and Bayern Munich.

"Trust me, this guy would chase the last pass in the last minute if a training session in July if he thought he could get the goal that won the eight-a-side," Ancelotti said.

"It's just that different players operate in different ways and Ibra knows that he has to conserve himself for the big moments. He can play in very tight spaces and his physique means that he can move defenders around too."

Ancelotti – who won the Premier League with Chelsea – pointed out that the reported United target is in a superior physical condition to the vast majority of players his age. "I know that he is 34 years old but anyone who has ever worked closely with footballers – and knows a thing or two about their fitness and their stamina – can see that Ibra is not your typical 34-year-old," he said.

"When he says that he is getting better, he means it. He's certainly better than any 34-year-old footballer I know."

Ibrahimovic – who has been strongly linked with United for months – is set to sign a money-spinning wherever he ends up, but Ancelotti insisted money is not his primary motivation. "There's no secret to these big players, in the end it comes down to one thing: they really love playing football," he said. "It keeps them going and keeps them hungry for more."