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Friday, November 16, 2012
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Ibrahimovic masterclass

Sweden striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates his opening goal during their international friendly against England in Stockholm on Wednesday.Photo: AFP

Zlatan Ibrahimovic drew praise from every corner after he scored all four goals -- including a jaw-dropping long-range bicycle kick -- in Sweden's 4-2 friendly win over England.

Ibrahimovic's 20th-minute opener on Wednesday made him the first player to score at Stockholm's Friends Arena, but England threatened to spoil the party by pulling ahead through Danny Welbeck and Steven Caulker.

Unfortunately for Roy Hodgon's side, it proved nothing but the cue for Ibrahimovic to take matters into his own hands.

After chesting down Anders Svensson's pass and volleying home a 77th-minute equaliser, he put Sweden ahead with a 30-yard free-kick and then served up the piece de resistance with an extraordinary fourth goal in injury time.

England goalkeeper Joe Hart was drawn from his goal by a long ball but he could not get enough distance on his clearing header and Ibrahimovic capitalised to send an incredible bicycle kick into the unguarded net from 25 yards.

"When I got the long ball, I saw the goalkeeper come out, and I thought, 'Should I go in for the duel, or wait for him to put it out?'" the Sweden captain told reporters.

“When he put it out, I had it in my mind to score -- to try to score. I tried to put it in the goal and when I was on the ground, I saw a defender trying to get it, but it went in."

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