Wed | Mar 21, 2018

Sweden say no to Zlatan

Published:Saturday | November 18, 2017 | 12:00 AM
Sweden's players celebrate at the end of the World Cup qualifying play-off second leg match between Italy and Sweden, at the Milan San Siro stadium, Italy on Monday. The match ended in a 0-0 draw and Sweden earned a spot to the World Cup.

Sweden's amazing qualification to the 2018 World Cup in Russia has led to suggestions that star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic could come out of retirement for the showpiece event.

The country's 1-0 aggregate win over Italy has been dominated by reports around the possibility of the Manchester United striker's return to the international arena after his retirement after Sweden's last match of Euro 2016.

However, a survey conducted by Swedish research consultancy Demoskop for news outlet Expressen, showed that 63 per cent of Swedish football fans do not want to see Ibra return to the side for the upcoming World Cup.

Even coach Janne Andersson seemed to have grown weary of the constant talk of a possible return of the world famous striker.

"This is incredible! This player has just stopped to play with Sweden one year and a half ago and we are still here talking about him," Andersson said in a post match press conference.

"Gosh, we need to talk about the great players we have in this team, I believe."

Former Sweden striker Kennet Andersson - who was part of the Sweden side that finished third in the 1994 World Cup, also weighed in, saying: "I really do not care if Zlatan is on the pitch, on the stands or bench.

"In all teams, the best squad takes place in a national team, and it definitely does not have to be the best players, but it is the best players to do the best for the team.

"I want to see the best team.

"I do not care about a player, it's the team that applies and I fully trust Janne to come to the right decision."