The penultimate goal in Serie A Zlatan scored in December 2021 at Friuli. On Saturday he aims for an encore at the Bianconeri’s home. To then answer the call from the Swedish coach who wants him as pack leader
Factor Zlatan to help Sweden. Ibra’s new outfit, increasingly leader and locker room man, ready for use even in the national team. The Rossoneri striker has been called up by coach Janne Andersson for the matches against Belgium and Azerbaijan, towards qualification for the next European Championships. Reasons? “His personality and his experience add a lot to the team.”
It is the new role of Ibrahimovic, in the service of Sweden at 41 years and 5 months. Guide and pack leader in a secluded position compared to the past, ready to give emotional support to young people on the launch pad and teammates, towards a next step in the growth path. His second life with the Rossoneri paved the way, as explained by the Swedish coach: “We’ve always been in contact, even during the period of his injury. Now he feels good, he can give his contribution on the pitch. He’s unique in this sense. He doesn’t I see him as a starter but with the match in progress, like in Milan”. Against Atalanta, two weeks ago, Zlatan returned to the field with the Rossoneri after 280 days: “Giving up is not an option,” he wrote on social media.
in the national team
With Sweden, Ibrahimovic collected 121 appearances (sixth in the all-time rankings) between major tournaments and various qualifiers and is the best scorer in the history of the national team with 62 goals. Twenty years of heavy goals (such as the one against Italy in Euro 2004, with a fatal backheel to Buffon) and iconic ones, such as the bicycle kick from thirty meters behind Hart on 14 November 2012 against England, in the friendly in Solna for the inauguration of the Friends Arena (the stadium where, in November 2017, Ventura’s Italy plays the qualification for the World Cup in Russia). Result? Four to two and poker for Zlatan, who with that stunt wins the Puskas Award for the best goal of the year. Technique and madness at the disposal of the ball, for the seal that gave him the greatest joy, as told to Corriere della Sera: “The English have always despised me, they said I never scored against them”.
A matter of stunts, from yesterday to today the common thread of a career. The penultimate goal scored by the Swede dates back to 11 December 2021, in Serie A against Udinese. Another bicycle kick, in full recovery, to snatch a point in the photo finish at the Dacia Arena. A decisive brick for the construction of the nineteenth championship. From Udinese to Udinese, in a match that could bring Zlatan back among the starters on Saturday evening, still in Friuli. One year and 4 months after that goal, but also fourteen months after his last as a starter for the Rossoneri (the controversial defeat at San Siro against Spezia). In the last three games, the forward has played more and more minutes: 16 against Dea, 24 with Fiorentina and 28 with Salernitana. Precisely in view of the match against the grenades, Pioli had thus spoken of his possible use from the first minute: “Not yet, but soon yes. It depends on many things”. Giroud’s disqualification could be one of them, anticipating the moment. The Rossoneri coach still has a few hours for final reflections. Against Udinese, Zlatan has never lost (8 wins and 6 draws in 14 games). And with one goal, he would become the oldest scorer in Serie A history, surpassing Costacurta. In his new suit, Zlatan the immortal waits and sets his sights on his next target.
March 16 – 13:31
© REPRODUCTION RESERVED
Leave a Reply