‘What a f***ing joke – incompetent people suffocate Swedish football’: Zlatan Ibrahimovic SLAMS Sweden boss Janne Andersson for dropping Juventus midfielder Dejan Kulusevski for France Nations League defeat
- Sweden lost 1-0 to France in the first round of the Nations League on Saturday
- Kylian Mbappe scored the winner as the world champions came out on top
- Sweden coach Janne Andersson dropped Dejan Kulusevski for the match
- Zlatan Ibrahimovic called Andersson ‘incompetent’ for dropping the youngster
Zlatan Ibrahimovic has slammed Sweden manager Janne Andersson for dropping Dejan Kulusevski for the UEFA Nations League defeat to France on Saturday.
Andersson’s side were beaten 1-0 by the 2018 World Cup champions thanks to Kylian Mbappe’s first-half strike as Sweden began their 2020 schedule with a defeat in Solna.
Juventus winger Kulusevski, who is widely regarded as one of the top young attackers in European football, started the game on the bench and was limited to just 20 minutes in the second-half – a decision which irked all-time record goalscorer Ibrahmovic.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic (above) has slammed the Sweden manager over his selection choices
Sweden coach Janne Andersson dropped Dejan Kulusevski (left) for Saturday’s loss to France
The AC Milan striker tweeted: ‘What a f****** joke. Another proof (of) incompetent people in the wrong positions that suffocate Swedish football.’
Kulusevski also seemed stunned by the manager’s decision not to start him, but says he has respect for the Sweden coach.
He told reporters after the game: ‘I think it was strange but I just respect the decision.
Ibrahmovic sent out a expletive tweet against Andersson (above) calling him ‘incompetent’
Kylian Mbappe scored the winner as France won 1-0 at Sweden in the Nations League
‘I was shocked. It felt really great at training. But unfortunately, this is football. I just need to take new steps in the next match.’
When asked whether he is likely to start the next match, the youngster said: ‘I think they (the chances) are better. I hope so. But I do not know.’
Kulusevski has just come off the back of a stellar season on loan at Parma from the Serie A champions, with the 20-year-old scoring ten league goals in 36 matches last term.
The winger had only played one game for Sweden before Saturday night’s defeat – a substitute appearance in a 3-0 win over the Faroe Islands last November – but the retirement of Ibrahimovic means the youngster is one of Sweden’s top attacking stars.
Kulusevski is one of Sweden’s top attacking stars having had a successful season at Parma
But Andersson opted to play 35-year-old Sebastian Larsson on the right-hand side, with Emil Forsberg on the left with Marcus Berg and Robin Quaison up front.
Brentford defender Pontus Jansson, who started the match at centre-back on Saturday night, was also surprised by the decision but said Kulusevski will have the chance to start more games.
Jansson said: ‘I’m sure he had a dialogue with Janne about why he was not allowed to start.’
The 20-year-old has moved back to parent club Juventus where he will play in the first-team
But the Sweden manager said he has not spoken with the winger about his selection choices.
The manager said: ‘In this case, I had no separate talk with Dejan, absolutely not.
‘I have not talked to him myself afterwards. I have not experienced him as very shocked.
Andersson revealed after the game that he has not spoken to Kulusevski about dropping him
‘He has done well in training, just like many others. We will see if there will be more playing time on Tuesday.
‘He has great qualities and is a great player and will grow into this eventually.’
Sweden’s next game is a home clash against European champions Portugal in Solna on Tuesday night.