Top five Zlatan Ibrahimovic international goals

In homage to Zlatan Ibrahimovic's record-breaking 50th goal for Sweden, Sports Mole takes a look at his top five international strikes.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic enhanced his reputation as Sweden's greatest ever footballer by breaking his country's long-standing international goalscoring record on Thursday night.

The 32-year-old became the first Swedish player to reach 50 goals with a brace against Estonia in a friendly, overtaking Sven Rydell's record of 49 goals, which had stood since 1932.

The mercurial striker will also reach a century of international appearances in his next outing for Sweden, making it the perfect time to pay homage to some of his greatest moments.

Here, Sports Mole has picked out five of his best strikes at international level to mark his record-breaking haul.



5. SWEDEN 2-0 Estonia (04/09/2014)

It was fitting that the goal that broke the record was a trademark cheeky finish from Ibrahimovic. Sweden played the ball down the right flank before slipping it inside for Sebastian Larsson, who in turn squared it into the middle of the box.

Ibrahimovic was already on the move, sneaking in front of the defender to flick the ball past a helpless keeper. He took his shirt off in celebration, revealing a message to the fans that read "You made it all possible".



4. Hungary 0-1 SWEDEN (07/09/2005)

With the match seemingly heading for a goalless draw, Sweden needed their talisman to pop up with something special to rescue three points in a World Cup qualifier against Hungary.

That is exactly what Ibrahimovic did, picking the ball up on the right side of the box before working a yard and hammering a vicious effort past the keeper at the near post. Despite the angle being against the striker, there was nothing the goalkeeper could do about it due to the sheer power behind the shot.



3. SWEDEN 2-0 France (19/06/2012)

Sweden's Euro 2012 campaign had been a huge disappointment going into their final group game against France. Defeats to co-hosts Ukraine and England in their first two matches had left them bottom of the group with no chance of progressing.

However, they rallied to pick up their first points of the tournament, and it was Ibrahimovic who got them on their way. With France needing a win to guarantee qualification, Ibrahimovic struck with an acrobatic volley in the 54th minute to open the scoring.

Sebastian Larsson added a second in stoppage time to hand Sweden the victory, but France still progressed courtesy of England's 1-0 win over Ukraine in the group's other game.



2. Italy 1-1 SWEDEN (18/06/2004)

Rarely has a European Championship group been as tight as it was in 2004, when Sweden, Denmark and Italy were all vying to get out of Group C. The Swedes were in the driving seat following a commanding 5-0 win over Bulgaria in their opening match but, with the toughest two games to come, they were in need of at least a point to stay in control of the group.

Trailing Italy 1-0 going into the final five minutes of their second group game, Ibrahimovic weighed in with a truly trademark goal - the type of which only he can score. Following a scramble inside the box, the striker beat goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon to the ball, flicking a seemingly impossible mid-air backheel over the keeper and the man on the line.

The Swedes went on to draw their final match against Denmark, which saw the Scandinavian nations both progress on goal difference ahead of Italy, who also finished with five points.



1. SWEDEN 4-2 England (14/11/2012)

The goal Ibrahimovic himself ranks as his greatest ever. This sensational effort capped off a masterful and majestic solo performance in a friendly against England, silencing the pre-match critics who suggested that the striker had not proven himself against English defences.

Having already netted a hat-trick to put his side on the verge of victory in Solna, Ibrahimovic sealed the win with a 35-yard bicycle kick after anticipating a poor headed clearance from Joe Hart. England's Ryan Shawcross raced back in a futile effort to prevent the ball going over the line as the Swede basked in the glory of the jewel in his goalscoring crown.

The strike was labelled by some afterwards as the greatest goal in football history, and it was no surprise to see it awarded the 2013 FIFA Puskas Award for the best goal of the year.


Sweden's striker and team captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic celebrates with his teammates after scoring his 3rd goal of the match during the FIFA World Cup 2014 friendly match England vs Sweden in Stockholm, on November 14, 2012
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