Zla­tan re­turn talks irk Swe­den boss

The Citizen (Gauteng) - - SPORT -

– The fi­nal whis­tle which sig­nalled that Swe­den had qual­i­fied for the World Cup was still echo­ing around the San Siro when the spec­u­la­tion be­gan – will re­tired record goal-scorer Zla­tan Ibrahi­movic (right) re­turn for the fi­nals in Rus­sia?

Swe­den had just se­cured a 1-0 ag­gre­gate vic­tory over Italy with a squad short on big names, a team that snatched sec­ond place in Euro­pean qual­i­fy­ing Group A from the Dutch and beaten France at home be­fore knock­ing out Italy, all with­out Zla­tan.

“This is in­cred­i­ble. The player has just stopped to play one-anda-half years ago and we are still here talk­ing about him,” Swe­den boss An­der­s­son told re­porters when asked if Ibrahi­movic was set

Stock­holm

to re­turn.

Shortly af­ter the game Zla­tan posted a pic­ture on so­cial me­dia with the cap­tion “We are Zwe­den”. By yes­ter­day, it had over a mil­lion likes on In­sta­gram, but An­der­s­son didn’t seem pos­i­tive.

“Zla­tan is, as I ex­pressed it, our great­est player of all time, a fan­tas­tic ath­lete in every way, but he has cho­sen not to take part,” he told a news con­fer­ence in Mi­lan yes­ter­day.

“Th­ese guys who did take part and have per­formed fan­tas­ti­cally. It’s sad to sit and talk about some­one who hasn’t been here. I have a gang that has done fan­tas­tic, we can talk about them in­stead.”

An­der­s­son’s play­ers were not in the mood to dis­cuss a pos­si­ble re­turn ei­ther. – Reuters

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