The former Everton defender looks back at what it was like to go to school with the Swedish star at Ajax
Former Everton defender Steven Pineaar revealed that he once had to escape from a hotel fire while roommate with Zlatan Ibrahimovic was on Ajax, but not before the Swedish star asked him to come back and get his bag first.
The two played together at a Dutch club when they were young, with Pineaar appearing from the club from 2001-2006 after joining from Ajax Cape Town in his hometown south Africa.
Ibrahimovic, meanwhile, was with Ajax from 2001-04 before heading to Juventus to continue what turned out to be a legendary career throughout Europe.
Throughout his career, many stories about Ibrahimovic’s collapse and confidence, and Pineaar had his own story about what it was like to go to school at young Zlatan.
“I usually go out with Zlatan and Rafa (van der Vaart). I remember a game in Groningen where we lived near the city the night before the match. Rioters in the Netherlands could be very active, but our hotel was quite remote and we didn’t do it.” “I don’t think there will be a problem,” he said Athletics.
“We had dinner and then went to our rooms. We watched TV and slept only to be woken up one morning by the club doctor, wearing pajamas. Very calmly, he told us not to panic but there was a fire and we needed to take our bags and leave the room.
“What do you mean, fire?” I ask. “The team bus caught fire,” he replied.
“That’s when I remembered that the bus was parked right under our window. I pulled the curtain back, saw the flame jumping high and thought the bus would explode. I took my bag. Zlatan stood there and said: ‘Don’ just left , you also have to take my bag! ‘
“We waited outside the hotel for 90 minutes in cold weather and were not sure when the match would be played. Ronald Koeman, our coach, told us we had to go back to sleep. I slept with one eye open.
“The match will take place. Koeman, who is like a father to us, said: ‘Look what they went through. Take a cold shower, because half of you fell asleep, and won the game.’ We won 2-0 and Zlatan scored.
“Zlatan and I will have a single bed and there isn’t much space between them. Sometimes, for no reason, he just starts kicking me. I don’t know why, but he’s a nice guy. We live close by and we’ll play PlayStation together. A happy time. “
Pineaar also recalled the famous incident of Egyptian star Mido throwing scissors at Ibrahimovic, although the defender said it was not a big problem at the time.
Two young boys who won. They are actually good friends, “he said.
“We play The Champions League the game and they argue about who didn’t pass the ball or something. Arguments begin in the field and continue in the dressing room. My seat is next to Zlatan’s. Mido untied his ankles with scissors. He threw scissors and they crashed into the wall between Zlatan and me.
“Senior players say it’s good because we argue, because it shows we have a winning mentality.
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“It came out in the paper and looked like a big problem, but they really came home together after the match. We have a tight dressing room.”
Pineaar is currently training with Ajax because he has already obtained his UEFA license.
Ibrahimovic, meanwhile, joins AC Milan this winter after serving with LA Galaxy, despite concerns about the striker’s future after he injured himself in training on Monday.
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