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Lagerback, Ibrahimovic arguing with Swedish media ahead of team's Euro 2008 opener

Lagerback, Ibrahimovic arguing with Swedish media ahead of team's Euro 2008 opener

The Swedish football team's relationship with the national media is no love affair, and the European Championship is no exception.
Coach Lars Lagerback accused Swedish reporters on Sunday of misquoting star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who said he's been "misunderstood" by the national press his entire career.
Lagerback opened a news conference at Sweden's training camp by suggesting that Ibrahimovic had been misquoted or misinterpreted two days earlier when he encouraged the promotion two younger teammates.
Ibrahimovic had said that he hoped Sebastian Larsson and Fredrik Stoor would get to play in the tournament, which generated headlines in the Swedish media. Some commentators suggested that he was not only trying to influence the lineup, but also taking a stab at captain Fredrik Ljungberg.
"I know Zlatan significantly better than you," Lagerback said. "The way I understood it, he was only pushing two younger players that he thinks have made progress."
Lagerback said the Swedish media had "put words in Zlatan's mouth" and that such reports were disruptive ahead of Sweden's opener at Euro 2008 against Greece on Tuesday.
"If there's anything that can affect the players, it is things like this," Lagerback said.
Asked to comment on the matter, Ibrahimovic said: "I have felt misunderstood by the Swedish media all my career _ but only Swedish media."
Ibrahimovic has had several run-ins with Swedish reporters and has refused to speak to one of the biggest tabloids for five years.
Lagerback has also clashed with the national media, like at the 2006 World Cup when a tabloid started a campaign to include midfielder Kim Kallstrom in the team instead of Anders Svensson. Lagerback has said it stirred negative vibes in the squad.
All players took part in Sweden's closed training session on Sunday, although Ibrahimovic and midfielder Tobias Linderoth skipped some parts to focus on individual training, Lagerback said. Both players are recovering from injuries.
Ibrahimovic said he was fit but wasn't sure whether he could play 90 minutes against Greece.


Updated : 2021-04-11 22:08 GMT+08:00