Zlatan Ibrahimovic's notorious outbursts at his colleagues are as famous as his exploits on the pitch. Image Credit: AFP

Dubai: It is said that a genius is often flawed. The 20th century American concert pianist, composer, music conductor, author, comedian and actor Oscar Levant famously noted: “There’s a fine line between genius and insanity, and I have erased this line”.

Before that, the Greek philosopher and polymath Aristotle had admitted: “No great mind has ever existed without a touch of madness.”

That’s the realm where the former Swedish, Barcelona and Manchester United star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic belongs to - as many of his past and present teammates have experienced.

Ibrahimovic is well-known to never mince words. And among those to find out their star striker’s wrath were his teammates at LA Galaxy after one particular painful loss last season.

The 38-year-old from Malmo, who left Old Trafford in 2018 and spent a couple of seasons in the US before returning to Italy to sign up with AC Milan, is known for his constant boasting and the odd light-hearted ‘death threat.’

One of Ibrahimovic’s teammates, Joao Pedro, related a not so rare incident during the Swedish star’s turbulent time in the Major League Soccer (MLS).

“We had an away clash against Houston Dynamo. We went 1-0 up, they came back, we levelled at 2-2 and in the last few minutes they scored to win 3-2. At the end of the match, Zlatan gave us a roasting, none of us will ever forget,” midfielder Pedro – now back in his native Portugal on loan with Tondela – was quoted as.

“He said ‘Look, if you came here to go to the beach, walk around Hollywood, just say, but tell me now. I have 300 million in the bank, an island and I don’t need this at all,” Ibrahimovic fumed.

“And the first person to open his mouth, I will kill him. I will really kill him,” Pedro recounted.

Ibrahimovic’s elevated self-esteem is no secret in the world of football.

“I think I am the best-ever to play in MLS. And that, without joking,” he had said after breaking the LA Galaxy’s season scoring record. “I’m here to perform and show everybody what the game is about. I think the two years I’ve had here. I’ve done good things. Amazing things. Perfect things,” he said.

If you are a genius like ‘Ibra,’ you can possibly get away with murder.