UEFA Champions League Final 2011: No Zlatan Ibrahimovic Is Good News - Barca Blaugranes

Fans tend to find excuses when they don't win things (and even sometimes when they do), and the best part of that exercise is that it's easy to turn those excuses into hope once the player in question goes away. For Barcelona, it was very easy to blame the debacle last year against Inter Milan on the presence of one Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Barca Blaugranes, SB Nation's Barcelona blog, are rejoicing in the fact that the lanky Swede is no longer on the team:

While it almost cost them in excess of €100,000,000 to replace Samuel Eto’o, they appear to have found a viable candidate in David Villa. The Zlatan Ibrahimovic experiment a year prior didn’t work out. During a semi-final clash against his former employers, Inter Milan, the lanky Swede even failed to cover more distance that goal-keeper Victor Valdes.

Let’s be frank, Zlatan Ibrahimovic is a domestic bully but a certified dud in international competitions. It’s no coincidence that his teams always fall short in Europe, whether it is Juventus Turin, Inter Milan, FC Barcelona or AC Milan, he is a major reason why his teams underperform. I dare to argue that a whole lot more was achievable for FC Barcelona in 2009/2010 if it wasn’t for the volatile character of Ibracadabra.

One suspects that Ibrahimovic would actually have been a useful outlet for Barcelona against a stout pair of central defenders in Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic, although nobody is doubting the obvious skill of his replacement in David Villa. However, should Barcelona manage to pull off the victory they're expecting against Manchester United on Saturday, it'll be two Champions League wins in three seasons, leaving Ibrahimovic looking like something of a curse.

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