Dirty Tackle

Zlatan Ibrahimovic warns Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of World Cup qualifying playoff

Brooks Peck
Dirty Tackle

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(Getty)

Hello, Cristiano. I am Zlatan — the cloud of pain that now hovers over you.

I must admit that the World Cup playoff draw was unfortunate. I know that many people do not like you, but I never felt that way. I have always seen you as a weaker, lavender scented version of Zlatan. A flattering Zlimitator. We both score goals at will and our gifts are unappreciated in Barcelona. You have boots with stars on them, I have boots filled with feet that are more powerful than the sun. Of course, I am better looking, have better hair and I am far more skilled in deadly martial arts than you, but all of this gives you something to aspire to. You're welcome.

Since there will not be 11 Zlatans playing for Sweden, I cannot guarantee you will lose. What I can guarantee is that it is in your best interest to do so. Sweden did not qualify for the 2010 World Cup. This was deeply unZlatisfactory to me. If it happens again, I will be forced to seek vengeance in ways that will make you wish you were attending an awards ceremony where Lionel Messi beats you in every category while your abs slowly morph into a beer belly. This is not a threat. Zlatan does not make threats. I make predictions that happen.

The World Cup needs Zlatan. Who else could do a backheel so Zlectacular that it makes the FIFA executives heads explode like Mario Balotelli's bathroom and convinces all of Brazil that hosting the tournament wasn't such a waste of money after all? Who else would put Xavi in a cat carrier and ship him to Tahiti when he decides to be the Goldilocks of groundskeeping and complains about a pitch being too dry or too wet for Spain? Who else would provide Pep Guardiola with an all expenses paid trip to Brazil to watch the tournament just to make him sit between Pele and Maradona while they bicker endlessly about whether Justin Bieber is better than One Direction? The answer is no one Zlelse.

I would wish you good luck, Cristiano, but after reading all of this you shouldn't want it. If you think Pepe can protect you from the wrath of Zlatan, then you will be mistaken and he will be crying.

Maybe when this is all over we can be friends. I can show you the best way to kick Gareth Bale in the head and how not to tweet about boys underwear competitions. That's how Zlamicable I can be.

Until then, I will see you on the pitch and you will see me in your nightmares.

Flamingo dream kick!

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