Zlatan Ibrahimovic: Hero or Villain?
Last July he became the most expensive football player of all time – racking up a little over €171m (£137m) in combined transfer fees on signing for his seventh club, Paris Saint-Germain – and last week he was widely hailed as having scored the greatest goal ever … What's not to love about Zlatan Ibrahimovic?
Let's start with those two things. Seven clubs? This man could give Nicolas Anelka a run for his money in the lack-of-loyalty stakes. If you or I had a CV that showed no more than three years' service in any one place, prospective employers would have every right to be suspicious. And that this footballing mercenary scored that goal on the very night Steven Gerrard, the epitome of the old-school, one-club man, was winning his 100th cap, only rubbed salt into the wound.
To the goal itself, then. It was, we grudgingly admit, a decent enough strike. Albeit one that came in the dying minutes of a meaningless friendly. Gifted by a goalkeeping error that meant the ball was hit into an empty net. The best ever? Not even the best bicycle kick ever: Wayne Rooney's against Manchester City last year was balletic rather than a speculative karate kick.
But none of this is what earns Ibrahimovic his horns here – because with his preening, posing manner, all-too-immaculate ponytailed mane, and Max Cady tattoos, there is no need to delve into this player's prowess on the pitch to make that call.
And so we come to what we know about what goes on in the mind of the man who trademarked the name "Zlatan" at the Swedish Patent and Registration Office.
Asked what his wife wants for her birthday, he replied: "Nothing, she already has Zlatan." He told his manager at Barcelona: "You bought a Ferrari but drive it like a Fiat." And he told a reporter who dared question his masculinity: "Come to my house and see if I'm gay. And bring your sister."
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, then. Overpaid, overindulged, overhyped for an overhead kick
- 1 Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
- 3 The Simpsons death: Creator Al Jean would 'kill himself' before character like Homer or Lisa
- 4 British man raped while urinating in bushes at Oktoberfest beer festival in Germany
- 5 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
Five-year-old Iris Grace is raising awareness of autism through her extraordinary paintings
Car tax disc changes: Two days to go - and they affect you much more than just not displaying a piece of paper
Isis an hour away from Baghdad - with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
British man raped while urinating in bushes at Oktoberfest beer festival in Germany
George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin wedding: The famous congratulate actor and human rights lawyer after Venice nuptials
Isis, we are told, is a 'clear and dangerous threat to our way of life'. I’m sorry, but I just don’t buy it
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
'Women, walk wherever you want' posters taken down in Stamford Hill following 'unacceptable' signs separating men and women
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
- < Previous
- Next >
£28, 700: Whiskey Whiskey Tango: Property Management Company is seeking a brig...
£80 - 100k + Bonus: Guru Careers: A COO / Chief Operating Officer is needed to...
£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager / Training Manager (L&D /...
£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - Edgware, Lon...