The enigmatic frontman is looking forward to a World Cup quarter-final clash which could see his nation overcome the Three Lions
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Zlatan Ibrahimovic is backing Sweden to overcome England in the World Cup quarter-finals, allowing him to indulge in some gentle trolling of former LA Galaxy star David Beckham.
The Three Lions overcame Colombia in a thrilling second round penalty shootout to set up a last eight encounter with Scandinavian foes.
Ibrahimovic will play no part in that contest, with the decision taken not to bring him out of international retirement this summer, but Sweden’s all-time leading goalscorer will be an interested observer on Saturday.
The enigmatic frontman believes his countrymen are capable of securing a semi-final berth, with the 36-year-old of the opinion that anything is possible from this point.
He told Expressen on Sweden’s chances after netting for the LA Galaxy in a 2-2 draw with D.C. United: “They are hard to beat and difficult to score against. If they can continue, Sweden has a good chance.
“But now it’s not just about how good you are. Now there are a lot of emotions in the picture, because it’s about quarter-finals. The team that can handle their feelings best will have an advantage.”
Ibrahimovic added on what a Sweden win would mean for him and discussions with an ex-England captain: “I am Swedish and I believe in Sweden against England. Then we’ll see what David Beckham says when I talk to him!”
While being of the opinion that Sweden can send England packing in the quarter-finals, Ibrahimovic also believes that Janne Andersson’s side are capable of going all the way.
He said: “Yes, I think Sweden can become world champion, just like I said before the World Cup started.
“They beat Mexico, who were strong, and then they defeated Switzerland as well. So they have had success, which nobody thought they would.
“They believe in themselves and have a strong sense of unity within the group. Hopefully they can continue with that.
“Now it’s England on Saturday and we’re all there with our full support behind them. All Swedes in the world are proud of our national team and they will continue to be proud no matter how it goes.”