Recently teammates and friends, now at the center of a public skirmish, Hakan Calhanoglu and Zlatan Ibrahimovic fill the summer slump in Serie A.
Both have played for Milan and Inter: Hakan Calhanoglu (left) and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
imago images (2)
Switching from Milan to Inter was actually tricky enough. But the fact that his former club became champions for the first time since 2011 in the first year after leaving their city rivals has caused Hakan Calhanoglu’s standing with many AC fans to sink a little further. Anger turned to malice.
And because Zlatan Ibrahimovic has happily fueled both feelings in recent months and Calhanoglu has now let himself be carried away to a sharp counterattack against his former teammate, Serie A is passing the summer break with a public war.
Ibrahimovic provokes abusive songs – Calhanoglu counters
In his latest book, Ibrahimovic recently accused the former Bundesliga professional (HSV, Leverkusen) of taking advantage of the EM drama surrounding Christian Eriksen and only receiving an offer from Inter because of his cardiac arrest. At the championship celebration with Milan, the Swede then asked the fans to “send a message” to the ex-colleague – abusive songs followed.
Calhanoglu’s answer on the Turkish TV station “Tivibu Spor” on Wednesday evening: “I wouldn’t do it if I were 40”, after all Ibrahimovic is no longer 18. “He didn’t contribute anything this year, he didn’t play at all (due to injury “only” 23 appearances and eight goals, editor’s note). But he does everything to get the attention of the fans.” And the mention of the book? It “had to be”, Calhanoglu etches: “Otherwise it would be empty.”
During their time together in Milan, he and Ibrahimovic had always spoken benevolently of each other in public and apparently also got along well privately. “He always called me, wanted to take me to dinner and rode a motorcycle with me.” They “respected” each other.
That seems to be over. Although he “doesn’t care at all” about what Ibrahimovic said and would “not answer” him, Calhanoglu did exactly that in his interview – and thus prepared the ground for another episode.