Zlatan Ibrahimovic is set to be immortalised on a postage stamp in his native Sweden to commemorate his soccer career.
Ibrahimovic is currently playing for Paris-Saint Germain, where he is widely regarded as one of the best players in the world. Zlatan is known as a soccer deity in Sweden because of his on field antics, which helped lead to this postage honor.
Zlatan’s stamp will go on sale in March 2014. The decision was reached by the Swedish Postal Service’s group of experts, who each year commission 60 different stamp motifs a year. Ibrahimovic’s stamps will go on sale in March 2014.
The 32-year-old soccer legend was obviously delighted by the announcement, commenting, “I’ve got to be on a corner of the stamp and it will be fun to see the finished result. It’s a great honor to be on a postage stamp, and I’m very proud to be selected.” Ibrahimovic added, “I get a lot of bills and there are rarely great stamps. Maybe that will change now.”
Britt-Inger Hahne, the director of stamps at the Swedish postal service, announced the decision by stating, “We know from experience that people choose stamps based on their images. I am very proud and happy to announce that next year we will publish a booklet of stamps picturing Zlatan Ibrahimovic.”
He continued, “If these stamps can help us reach new audiences, people that today neither send nor receive letters, that would be fantastic.”
Zlatan has had a terrific last eighteen months since he arrived in the French capital. The striker was recently nominated for the 2013 FIFA Ballon d’Or, and he also scored what is widely regarded as the best goal of the year against England last November.
Ibrahimovic will go up against Lionel Messi, who has won the award for the last four, consecutive, seasons, Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo, and Bayern Munich’s Arjen Robben. The winner will be announced on January 13, at a ceremony in Zurich.
Thiago Silva, Zlatan’s PSG teammate, believes that Ibrahimovic deserves the accolade, but might struggle to overcome Messi and Ronaldo. The defender explained to Sky Italia, “As a football fan I love Ibrahimovic. I’m sure that he will be in the top three for the Ballon d’Or.”
He then added, “It will be difficult for him to win but I think he deserves it as he is performing better than Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.”
[Image via Abel Tumik/Shutterstock]