The biggest personality in global soccer hit the shores of the New World as Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s best-selling autobiography, I Am Zlatan, went on sale in book stores in June.
I Am Zlatan, which Ibrahimovic co-wrote with Swedish novelist and creative writing teacher David Lagercrantz, has been on sale for two years in Europe where it has been on the best-seller list in just about every country. Ibrahimoivc even has his own smart phone app which is available for $9.99 for both Android and iPhone.
The Paris St. Germain and Sweden superstar is already a household name in Europe, and the widespread availability of European soccer on American television has made Ibrahimovic famous in the U.S., but how well his book will sell remains unknown. The Swede has famously compared himself to basketball icon Michael Jackson, saying he was bigger in the U.S. than the Bulls star. His book sales will certainly determine the level of his American popularity.
As he gears up for his U.S. book launch, Ibrahimovic is also contemplating doing an about-face on attending the 2014 World Cup, which opens in Brazil two weeks after his book launch. When Sweden lost to Portugal last fall and failed to qualify for the tournament, Zlatan said he would not attend as a spectator because “a World Cup without me is not worth watching.” However fans in Brazil began a petition drive on Twitter begging Ibrahimovic to attend. The campaign has gone viral and thousands of people around the world have joined in the effort. Ibrahimovic, in an interview with Sports Illustrated, said he is now re-thinking that position.
“Let’s see,” Ibrahimovic told “It will be a surprise, because they are convincing me, but still I am thinking. It was a nice campaign they did. It was fantastic with the people involved: big athletes from Anderson Silva to Ronaldo to Dani Alves and others. So I was very happy when I saw it, and it motivated me a lot.”
“You never know,” he said. “It’s like football. Maybe I do the unpredictable and I show up.”
Ibrahimovic led PSG to a second-straight title this season, scoring 40 goals in 44 matches. He finished second only to UEFA Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo in scoring and in votes for the UEFA prize. As a consolation prize of sorts, he won the French Player of the Year award for the second-straight year. At 32, he is at the top of his game and appears to have finally found a home in Paris. When he does decide to leave the pitch, PSG wants him to remain with the club. PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi plans to ask Ibrahimovic to become sporting director when his playing days come to an end.
"I spoke to Zlatan so that he’ll stay with us when he finishes his playing career and becomes sporting director," Al-Khelaifi told RTL radio. "If he does that he’ll become the best sporting director in the world. He’s got a big personality and everybody respects him. I appreciate the professional that is Zlatan, the man that is Zlatan. He’s very, very funny."

Swede wins NBA honor
Joakim Noah became the first Chicago Bulls player in two decades to win the NBA Defensive Player of the Year Award.
The son of French tennis legend Yannick Noah and the artist (and former Miss Sweden) Cecilia Rodhe averaged 12.6 points, 11.3 rebounds, 1.5 blocked shots and 1.2 steals a game for the Bulls this season. The 29-year-old Noah, who holds Swedish, French and U.S. citizenship, became the first Bulls player to win the award since Michael Jordan in 1988.
"This is very humbling to be in this situation right now," Noah said. "I never thought I would be in this position. I just kept working."
Noah is one of very few Swedes to currently play in the NBA, joining Jonas Jerebko of the Detroit Pistons and Jeffery Taylor of the Charlotte Bobcats.
"This award is not about me. This is about our team. This is a team award," Noah said.
When the Bulls lost star playmaker Derrick Rose to injury early in the season after he missed all of last season and later traded away British star Luol Deng, Chicago stressed defensive work and Noah set the tone for the team.
"Through all the adversity we went though, we kept fighting. That's something I will never forget," Noah said. "It means more than awards. This game is not about awards. It's about winning. These awards are great but they are not why I play the game."
Noah said he owes much of his work ethic to his father and watching his determination on the tennis court.
"I watched the way my father worked as a tennis player and subconsciously it taught me work ethic," Noah said.
"There are so many distractions out there. You just have to stay focused on your craft. You have to stay focused on your belief in yourself."
Noah received 555 of a possible 1,125 points, including 100 first-place votes from a media panel, to defeat runner-up Roy Hibbert of Indiana, who had 166 points and eight first-place votes. The Los Angeles Clippers' DeAndre Jordan was third with 121 points with eight first-place votes.