Zlatan Ibrahimovic: I made Sweden ‘my country’

Zlatan Ibrahimovic: I made Sweden 'my country'
It's farewell from Zlatan in a Sweden shirt. Photo: Claude Paris/AP/TT
Sweden's talisman striker may have bowed out international football with a 1-0 loss to Belgium on Wednesday, but Zlatan Ibrahimovic still took a positive outlook on his time in the yellow and blue shirt.

Ibrahimovic said he was filled with pride as he made his last appearance for Sweden, saying he had emerged from “the ghetto” to become Sweden's record goal scorer

The 1-0 defeat to Belgium at Euro 2016 was not the way the brash striker would have wanted to depart the international stage, but he said he would take “fantastic memories” with him.

“It's heavy, it's disappointing, but at the same time I enjoyed it,” Ibrahimovic said after the final Group E match in Nice.

“We got the possibility to play at the Euros, and represent Sweden. This was my last game in the national team. I have many fantastic memories from the national team, because it's a nice story because where I came from, what people call the ghetto,”

“I came from little Rosengård and I made Sweden my country. And it will always be my country”

Ibrahimovic, 34, was born to a Bosnian father and a Croatian mother in the tough Malmö neighbourhood of Rosengård and had a difficult childhood.

He scored 62 goals in 116 international matches, but failed to get a shot on target as a poor Swedish side were the only team not to qualify from their group.

Though selected in the initial 35-man Sweden squad to go to the Rio Olympics this August, he has said he will not participate