Zlatan Ibrahimovic of AC Milan has been recalled back to the Sweden squad for the upcoming Euro 2024 qualifiers after a year long away due to a knee injury.
The 41 year old veteran forward break his anterior cruciate ligament in April 2022 and went for surgery a month later, and he hasn’t played for the national team since the 2022 World Cup qualifier playoff where Sweden suffer a defeat to Poland in March 2022.
After making his return to the pitch from the bench against Atalanta on the 26th of February, 2023, he has played against Fiorentina and Salernitana.
Sweden’s head coach Janne Andersson announced Ibrahimovic’s inclusion in the Swedish team to face Belgium and Azerbaijan later this month when the International break gets underway.
Andersson emphasized that Ibrahimovic wouldn’t be expected to start, but that he might play a role similar to the one he has in Italy, coming off the bench to make an impact after halftime.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has only played 68 minutes in three games for Milan this season after having surgery at the conclusion of last season.
Ibrahimovic is Sweden’s all-time leading goal scorer with 62 goals in 121 international appearances despite a gap between Euro 2016 and their failed World Cup qualification in 2021.
The experienced forward will make his 22nd appearance for his country if he plays in either of the two matches in March. His international career began in January 2001.
Ibrahimovic announced his retirement from the national team following the 2016 European Championship, but he made a comeback five years later. He was supposed to play in the last Euros and the first 2022 World Cup qualifying matches, but injuries kept him out of action.
Victor Lindelof, Anthony Elanga, Alexander Isak, and Dejan Kulusevski are Premier League players included in the team.
What’s next for Zlatan Ibrahimovic?
The Swede will play his last game for Milan against Udinese on Saturday before heading to Belgium on March 24 and Azerbaijan on March 27 for qualifying matches.
In addition, Ibrahimovic is on the verge of breaking Zoff’s record as the oldest player to feature in Euro qualifier milestone of 40 years and 90 days set in 1983.
If Sweden makes it to the competition in Germany next year, Ibrahimovic will have a chance to tie or even break the record established by Gabor Kiraly of Hungary, who was 40 years old when he participated in the 2016 tournament.
What’s your opinion on Ibrahimovic being called back to the Sweden national team, and how do you think he can help the team? Share your thoughts with us in the space provided for comments.