Zlatan Ibrahimovic scores absurd 40-yard goal, late winner in first MLS game

Los Angeles Galaxy’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic and teammates celebrate Ibrahimovic’s first of two goals during the second half against LAFC. The Galaxy won 4-3. (AP)

Dear Los Angeles. You’re welcome.”

That’s how Zlatan Ibrahimovic announced his arrival in Los Angeles with the LA Galaxy.

Then he gave the soccer equivalent of that same announcement in his first MLS game.

Ibrahimovic completed the Galaxy’s unbelievable comeback from 3-0 down to beat cross-town rival LAFC 4-3 in the first-ever match between the two teams.

He tied it with a stunning half-volley from 40 yards out, over the head of LAFC goalkeeper Tyler Miller:

Then he won it with a gutsy (perhaps offside) header at the near post right at the end of the 90 minutes:

With only one training session under his belt, and with the effects of a serious knee injury still lingering, Ibrahimovic – the mercurial 36-year-old striker who’s won almost every European club trophy there is to win – started on the bench. With the Galaxy down 3-1, he made his entrance in the 71st minute.

“I think I heard, ‘We want Zlatan, we want Zlatan,'” Ibrahimovic said of the crowd during a postgame interview with Fox. “And I gave them Zlatan.”

And now there can be only one message from Los Angeles – or at least half of it – to Ibrahimovic.

“Dear Zlatan. Thank you.”

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Henry Bushnell covers global soccer, and occasionally other ball games, for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Question? Comment? Email him at henrydbushnell@gmail.com or follow him on Twitter @HenryBushnell.

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