In honour of our genius! Swedes add verb 'to Zlatan' to national dictionary
13:58 GMT, 27 December 2012
Wonder goal: Ibrahimovic celebrates his stunning long-range overhead kick against England
Sweden has added the verb ‘to Zlatan’ to their national dictionary.
In the country’s latest way of honouring their footballing hero, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, the Swedish Language Council has approved the term, since it has been increasingly used in conversation by Swedes referring to an outlandishly talented action.
The word was originally coined on Les Guignols, a popular satirical puppet show – similar to Spitting Image – from French station Canal Plus, whose characters are in awe of the PSG striker.
To recognise this, the Swedes have even acknowledged the original French spelling of ‘zlataner’, simply tweaking to create ‘zlatanera’ and officially defined it as ‘from the French: to dominate on and off the field.’
Ibrahimovic is currently Ligue 1’s top scorer having netted 18 times for the Parisians. While he is a natural showman, he admitted that he does not rehearse his goal celebrations.
‘When I score a goal, I never know in advance how I will celebrate, given (I’m) the current top scorer in the championship,’ he told RMC Sport.
‘There is so much adrenaline. Timing is everything, the environment, my mood. This is pure emotion.’
Many players have lent their names to particular moves before, but affording their overall brilliance to a verb is a first.
Johann Cruyff was honoured with the ‘Cruyff turn’ and the 360-degree turn has been attributed to Garrincha – although both Zinedine Zidane and Diego Maradona have staked claim to this.
PSG are currently leading Ligue 1 on goal difference, ahead of Lyon and Marseille and face Valencia in the last 16 of the Champions League in February.
Talisman: Ibrahimovic is the leading scorer in the French top division with 18 goals