14 fun facts about Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Zlatan Ibrahimovic is not just one of the greatest ever Swedish players, but he has also become one of the most successful and recognisable athletes in the world.
Born in 1981 in Sweden, Ibrahimovic has played for some of the biggest and most prestigious clubs in Europe, including Ajax, Juventus, Inter, Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester United.
He has won numerous awards and accolades throughout his career, including league titles in four different countries, a Uefa Cup, and several individual awards.
Ibrahimovic is not just a great footballer, but also a larger-than-life personality with a unique style, both on and off the pitch.
He is known for his confidence, outspokenness, and sense of humour, which have made him a fan favourite and a media sensation.
But what are the 13 things you absolutely need to know about the attacker?
Born in Malmo
Ibrahimovic's background is a blend of Bosnian and Croatian heritage, stemming from his father and mother, respectively, although he was born in Malmo, Sweden.
He faced challenges in his early life due to his parents' divorce when he was just two years old and was raised in the multicultural neighbourhood of Rosengard.
Malmo has produced several successful footballers over the years, including Ibrahimovic, Markus Rosenberg Daniel Andersson, Pontus Jansson, Jesper Blomqvist, Mattias Jonson and Tobias Hysen.
These footballers have gone on to play for various clubs in Sweden and beyond and have made a significant impact on the sport of football.
Birthday pals with Gwen Stefani and A$AP Rocky
Ibrahimovic was born on October 3 and shares his birthday with celebrities like Gwen Stefani, A$AP Rocky, Tommy Lee, Alicia Vikander and Neve Campbell to name just a few.
Played for Serie A big three
Ibrahimovic is one of a number of players who represented Serie A's so-called big three: Milan, Inter and Juventus.
Other players who did the same include Christian Vieri, Edgar Davids, Andrea Pirlo and Roberto Baggio.
Sweden's all-time top goalscorer
Ibrahimovic is considered one of the greatest Swedish footballers of all time and holds the record for the most goals scored for the Sweden national team with 62 strikes.
He sits ahead of other all-time greats such as Sven Rydell, Gunnar Nordahl, Henrik Larsson and Gunnar Gren.
Had his own clothing brand
The Zlatan Ibrahimovic clothing line A-Z closed down after two years due to a loss of $18 million.
The line was launched in 2016 and was expected to generate revenue by leveraging the Swedish footballer's popularity and image.
However, despite the initial hype and investment, the business failed to turn a profit and eventually had to shut down.
For Ibrahimovic, it serves as a reminder that success on the pitch does not always translate to success off the pitch.
Despite the closure of his clothing line, Ibrahimovic remains a dominant force in the world of football, though, and continues to be a popular figure among fans.
- Getty Images
Zlatan has a passion for tattoos that reflects his larger-than-life personality and his love for self-expression.
His tattoos, which cover much of his body, tell the story of his life, his passions, and his beliefs. From portraits of himself and his wife, to symbols of strength and power, Zlatan's tattoos are a reflection of his personal journey and the things that matter most to him.
He has been inked by some of the world's leading tattoo artists, and his tattoos have become an iconic part of his image and personal brand.
Whether they are inspiring or controversial, Zlatan's tattoos are a testament to his love for the art form and his desire to make a bold statement with his body art.
Falling out with Pep Guardiola
Ibrahimovic joined Barcelona from Inter in 2009, but his time at the club was marked by a series of disagreements with Guardiola.
He publicly criticised Guardiola's tactics and playing style, and the two had several on-field arguments during games.
Additionally, Guardiola chose to bench Ibrahimovic for key matches, further exacerbating the tension between the two.
Ultimately, Ibrahimovic was sold to Milan at the end of the season, marking the end of his short-lived stint at Barcelona and his troubled relationship with Guardiola.
Looking back on his time with Guardiola, Ibrahimovic famously said the following:
"When you buy me, you are buying a Ferrari. If you drive a Ferrari, you put premium petrol in the tank, you hit the motorway and you step on the gas.
"Guardiola filled up with diesel and took a spin in the countryside. He should have bought a Fiat."
Mido, a former professional footballer, nearly altered the course of Ibrahimovic's career when he threw a pair of scissors in his direction.
The altercation took place in the dressing room of Ajax, where both players were teammates at the time.
The reason for the argument remains unclear, but it escalated to a point where Mido felt compelled to throw the scissors.
Fortunately, the altercation did not result in any serious injury to either player, and both went on to have extended careers.
Impressive car collection
Ibrahimovic is known for his extravagant lifestyle, including his extensive car collection.
The Sweden footballer has an impressive collection of luxury cars including a Lamborghini Aventador, Ferrari 599 GTO, Audi RS6, Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG and a Porsche 911 Turbo S.
- Getty Images
Ibrahimovic earned himself the nickname Ibracadabra with his inventive, skilful playing style.
His goal for Ajax against NAC Breda where he dribbled past numerous opponents before calmly slotting home was one example of him showcasing his unique style, with the famous bicycle kick against England another stunning piece of skill.
Ibrahimovic has a strong connection with combat sports, specifically mixed martial arts (MMA).
He is an avid fan of the sport and has even trained in MMA himself.
In interviews, he has stated that he finds the discipline and physicality of MMA to be similar to that of football and he even called himself the Conor McGregor of football at some point.
In addition to being a fan, Zlatan has also used his platform as a professional footballer to promote the sport.
He has been seen at several events, and even dressed in MMA gear for a photo shoot in 2015.
Over 500 career goals
Ibrahimovic is one of a small group of players to have surpassed the 500-career goals mark.
He has won numerous individual awards for his goalscoring, including several top scorer awards, and has been recognised as one of the best strikers of his generation.
His numbers are not quite at the same level as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, though!
LeBron James feud
Ibrahimovic was not impressed when LeBron sent him a signed LA Lakers jersey when they both played in the city of angels, adding his own signature before sending the gift back.
The striker then made headlines again when he publicly criticised the NBA star for being too vocal about his political views, which in turn didn't go down well with LeBron!
Oldest Serie A goalscorer
Ibrahimovic became the oldest scorer in Serie A history with his goal in AC Milan's clash against Udinese in March 2023.
The Sweden international converted a penalty in first-half stoppage time to pull his side level after they fell behind early in the game.
At 41 years and 166 days old, he overtook Alessandro Costacurta, who held the record from his days at Milan.