Ben Forster: Zlatan Ibrahimovic is absolutely brilliant at Manchester United

by Leo Nieboer

West Bromwich Albion and former Manchester United keeper Ben Foster has heaped praise on Zlatan Ibrahimovic following Manchester United’s 2-0 win over the Baggies on Saturday.

Foster, who spent five years at Old Trafford, was on the receiving end of a Zlatan masterclass last weekend.

The Swede powered home an unstoppable header in the fourth minute before putting the game beyond doubt with a powerful deflected strike after 56 minutes.

Foster, speaking after the game, was quick to shower praise on the 35-year-old.

“I was actually quite surprised how direct they [Man United] were,” he said. 

“They are more than happy to launch the ball forward. But then, they’ve got Zlatan up front. He’s really good in the air, he’s got great feet, he’s powerful and can probe with it.

“Look at the second goal – most players are looking to pass there but he chips it over the defender then just wellies it. How old is he? 35? Jesus – he’s brilliant. He’s in great shape. He’s a big bloke but he’s so mobile.

“You don’t do what he’s done and win what he’s won just by being a big lump. He’s got a few more strings to his bow than that.”

West Brom’s back four had a nightmare on Saturday. Jonas Olsson and Craig Dawson make up a formidable, highly physical centre-back pairing under Tony Pulis, but Zlatan’s rambunctious presence was too much for them to handle.

The Swede was always in their faces. He held up the ball expertly, always ghosting into space, sending bodies to the floor with his monstrous physique and – at the sniff of a chance – ruthlessly punishing the home side. You could tell that, as Zlatan wheeled away to celebrate his second, West Brom’s back four just wanted the game to be over.

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