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Zlatan Ibrahimovic: “I would like to play in MLS, absolutely”


Paris Saint-Germain’s English midfielder David Beckham (R) and Swedish forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic pose prior to the French Cup football match Paris Saint-Germain vs Olympique de Marseille on February 27, 2013 at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris. AFP PHOTO/ FRANCK FIFE (Photo credit should read FRANCK FIFE/AFP/Getty Images)

AFP/Getty Images

With Kaka, Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, Andrea Pirlo and maybe Didier Drogba in Major League Soccer, maybe Zlatan Ibrahimovic feels like he’s missing out on the party.

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The Paris Saint-Germain forward, currently on a preseason tour with the French champions in the United States of America, has been quoted by Yahoo Sports as saying that it would be an “amazing experience” to play in MLS and that “it’s growing in the right direction.”

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Here is more of what Ibrahimovic, 33, has to say, as Yahoo also reported that he favors a move (like most superstars heading to MLS) to Los Angeles, Miami or New York City.

“I would like to play in the U.S., absolutely,” Ibrahimovic said. “I think [playing in MLS] would be an amazing experience. I see that soccer is growing a lot in the US. I was here 10 years ago and soccer was not on the level that it is today, but it’s growing. It’s growing in the right direction and I want it to be on the level of Europe. It will come here.”

Recent reports have claimed that the former Barcelona, Inter Milan and Ajax forward is heading back to AC Milan this summer, but with a lucrative deal at PSG and talk of a move to MLS, maybe Ibrahimovic will not return to the San Siro after all.

Ibrahimovic has property in Manhattan and has spoken about his love for soccer in the U.S. before, but this is the biggest indication yet that he plans to spend his final years playing in MLS. So what options would he have? Well, Zlatan would be a blockbuster hit wherever he ends up, but how about linking up with his former teammates at PSG, David Beckham, if his Miami franchise ever gets off the ground? And then there’s the ambitious LAFC franchise which will likely arrive in 2018. Maybe at the age of 36 Zlatan will be ready to arrive in MLS?

“MLS is a retirement league!” I hear a large number of you screaming at your computer screens right now. Well, the signing of players like Sebastian Giovinco and Giovani dos Santos suggests otherwise, but if superstars like Drogba, Pirlo and maybe Ibrahimovic become available, how do you not try and snap them up if you’re an MLS club? If these top class players are still near full fitness they can provide plenty of experience and skill on the pitch, but their impact off the field is massive in terms of tickets and merchandise sales. C’mon, we all know this is a business too.

So, will an MLS city near you soon be “daring to Zlatan?”

Follow @JPW_NBCSports