Wenger tried to sign Ibrahimovic for Arsenal

08:05 16 November 2012

Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Photo credit: Joe Giddens/EMPICS

Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Photo credit: Joe Giddens/EMPICS

EMPICS Sport

Arsene Wenger hailed Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s wonder goal against England - and claimed he once tried to sign the Sweden striker.

Ibrahimovic scored all four of Sweden’s goals in their 4-2 win over England in Stockholm, but it was his stunning fourth - a 25-yard overhead kick - which has dominated discussion since the moment it hit the net.

While Wenger might preach team play over individual brilliance, he could only marvel at Ibrahimovic’s strike.

“I believe we are all amazed because, sometimes, when a guy has a shot from 30 yards and puts it in the top corner, you say ‘it’s a fantastic goal’ - but somehow you believe you can do that as well, even if you cannot do it on a consistent level,” he told the club’s website.

“But when he scores a goal like that, you think it’s impossible for a normal athlete. You have to be an exceptional athlete to do that.

“They say he’s a master in kung fu. You could see that on Wednesday night. You need some special flexibility, subtleness and physical strength to do that, apart from the fact that you have to realise what you have to do.

“When [England goalkeeper] Hart headed the ball, he took a distance to eventually get the ball. There’s intelligence included as well. I’m an admirer of collective goals, but as an individual achievement, just you and the ball in the situation of the game, it is something exceptional.”

Wenger, who has long had a reputation for spotting talent at a young age, claimed he had been tracking Ibrahimovic when he was 16 but was never able to complete a deal.

“He came here to visit the training ground,” Wenger added. “He didn’t want to make a trial because he was 16 years old at the time. He went home and we concluded to watch him again.

“I wanted to see him in training but it didn’t stop him from making a great career. In the end, he chose to go to Ajax Amsterdam. That happens. He’s not the only one in that case.

“The confidence he shows... if a performance isn’t there you can say you don’t agree with it, but when a performance is there, you think his confidence is justified. Through his career, he has justified why he believes in his own talent.”

Related articles

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Submit your Arsenal player ratings

Latest Arsenal news

Monday, April 20, 2015
Chelsea's Didier Drogba (Nigel French/PA Wire)

Chelsea could be without all three of their first-team strikers when they face Arsenal on Sunday as Didier Drogba has picked up an ankle injury.

Monday, April 20, 2015
Per Mertesacker and Gabriel Paulista of Arsenal (Photos by Getty Images)

Gabriel Paulista’s impressive performance in the FA Cup semi-final win over Reading shows that he is now ready to start for Arsenal.

Monday, April 20, 2015
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger (Picture: David Davies/PA Wire)

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger admits he needed to rest Hector Bellerin against Reading due to an ankle injury, and was pleased with how Mathieu Debuchy and Kieran Gibbs played.

Monday, April 20, 2015
Chelsea players celebrate with Eden Hazard after Loic Remy's winning goal against Stoke City (Photo by Ian Walton/Getty Images)

Chelsea winger Eden Hazard admits he is feeling tired and in need of a ‘magic potion’ to get up for games at the moment.

Monday, April 20, 2015
Lukas Podolski of Inter Milan (Photo by Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images)

Lukas Podolski believes he still has a part to play at Arsenal next season despite being sent out on loan to Inter Milan.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

Arsenal Transfer News