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Striking Swede who has done some growing

Sweden’s team bus is a popular subject of fans’ photographs. A slogan buy canada goose coat online down the side of best price canada goose jacket outlet usa online store it reads: “See You In The Final”.

The Swedes are not famous for bragging so maybe there was an S missing from Final, though the way they have begun the tournament has prompted plenty to think they have the form and, in Henrik Larsson and Zlatan Ibrahimovic, the forwards, to take them to Lisbon on Sunday week.

As Denmark’s coach Morten Olsen said of Sweden: “I’m pleased to see the change to a more offensive way of playing. Years ago they were organised defensively.”

Olsen is an impressive character at close quarters and there was nothing false in his assessment of Sweden’s strengths. You got the feeling that he was genuinely happy as a football man to see Sweden playing a more expansive game.

But Olsen has joined those persuaded that with Freddie Ljungberg displaying a verve not seen consistently at Arsenal this season, Sweden have a trio of reasons buying a canada goose jacket online to believe they should be offensive. Larsson – off to Barcelona soon judging by their president Juan Laporta’s comments yesterday – and Ljungberg are well known for what they bring to the drama, but the 22-year-old Ibrahimovic is beginning to show that at this level he can act too.

Laporta is impressed. “I like Ibrahimovic, too,” he said, “but Larsson is free whereas Ibrahimovic belongs to Ajax and I know that they and Ronald Koeman would like to keep him for one more year there.

“For next season it would be difficult, because the amount of money they are asking for him is too can i wash my canada goose coat high. They best canada goose coat for women buy canada goose jacket online canada berlin film festival ends canada goose jacket sponsorship amid are talking about 20m buy canada goose parka cheap and he is young. For players to have demonstrated their consistency is very important.”

Until his mercurial back-flicked equaliser against Italy on Friday night, the most widely known stories about Ibrahimovic concerned his inconsistency, on and off the pitch. A few years ago outlet, in his home town of Malmo, Ibrahimovic wandered into the red-light district and pretended to be a policeman. canada goose coat 1000 bulbs

He arrested a man, who it transpired was a priest, but it was Ibrahimovic who got into trouble with the law. The story will follow him everywhere he goes, as it did when he left Malmo as a 5.5m teenager three years ago. So will other ephemera, like his ability at taekwondo. Then there was best price for canada goose jacket the time at customs when he said he had a gun in his bag.

Born to a Croatian mother and a Bosnian father in Malmo, these are offered as evidence of Ibrahimovic’s idiosyncrasy, also giving an impression of someone set apart from the Swedish norm.

But that was then. Following surgery on an injured groin in January, Ibrahimovic arrived in Portugal rested and motivated, no longer bent on impersonation. Gazetta dello Sport described Ibrahimovic’s goal against Italy on Friday as “worthy of Van Basten”.

Association by exaggeration perhaps, but the headline was apt in its own way. Not only does Ibrahimovic wear the Ajax No9 shirt once worn by Marco van Basten, it is Van Basten, now a youth coach at Ajax, to whom credit is being given for a change in Ibrahimovic’s attitude.

“He has matured incredibly in the last year,” the Sweden joint manager Lars Lagerback said after the Italy game. “In one night he showed what a unique player he is.”

Van Basten must have been almost as satisfied. His latest advice to Ibrahimovic was that he “must become more individual in the box”.

Koeman provided a third link with Van Basten. “Of all the players in my time at Ajax,” Koeman said of Ibrahimovic, “he’s made the biggest progression. He’s a top-class European player now. I know he’s difficult but often the best players are. He is now ready to go to Italy or Spain.”

Laporta ruled out Catalonia yesterday, at least for now. But Juventus and Internazionale have been Ibrahimovic admirers for a while, though whether the rest of Italy is . . .