For the majority of Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s career, the striker dominated in Europe, proving to be one of the best soccer players in the world. Last March, the 36-year-old Sweden native decided to bring his talents to the United States, signing with the LA Galaxy of Major League Soccer. But don’t think it was because of a lack of offers. Ibrahimovic reportedly turned down a $100 million contract to play in China, for a chance to come to Los Angeles on a $3 million deal. It was an opportunity for Americans to see Ibrahimovic up close and he certainly hasn’t disappointed – and Saturday’s goal was further proof.
With the first half nearing a close and the Galaxy trailing 3-0, Ibrahimovic received a floater from Jonathan dos Santos, at which point, rather than readjust his body, he raised his boot and roundhouse kicked it, almost karate style, past Toronto FC goalkeeper Alexander Bono. Not only was it one of the most amazing goals you’ll see all season but it was a milestone for Ibrahimovic, as it was the 500th goal of his career, which has spanned close to two decades. Check out Ibrahimovic’s amazing goal for yourself:
— Major League Soccer (@MLS) September 16, 2018
“Those things you don’t plan, it’s impossible,” he told MLS’ website. “The way it came, I just tried to get it on goal. I’m just happy for the Toronto fans, that they got to see something they haven’t seen before. It’s nice. Wherever I play in MLS, the away supporters become like my home supporters. I see them excited when they see me play.”
The goal warranted quite a loud ovation from the supporters, many of which – including the announcers covering the match – couldn’t believe what they had just witnessed. Of his 500 career goals, 17 have been during his MLS tenure. Ibrahimovic is currently second in the league in goals, trailing Atlanta FC’s Josef Martinez – who is having an outstanding season – by 11 scores. It’s not his first acrobatic goal of the season, as Ibrahimovic has managed to score several memorable goals, but nothing comes even close to this one.
And there’s probably plenty more where that came from. Ibrahimovic is signed with the Galaxy until the end of 2019, so we can only hope that we continue to see jaw-dropping goals in MLS. Now we wait to see if he’ll be able to lead the Galaxy to another MLS Cup.