Zlatan Ibrahimovic tallied twice in his 19-minute debut for the LA Galaxy. (Photo courtesy of MLS)
NEW YORK – LA Galaxy forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic was voted the Major League Soccer player of the week by the North American Soccer Reporters for the fifth week of the season, it was announced Tuesday.
In his MLS debut, the Swede scored two goals to help the Galaxy complete a dramatic come-from-behind 4-3 victory in the club’s first match against new rival Los Angeles Football Club at the StubHub Center Saturday.
The Galaxy became only the second team in MLS regular season history to win a match after trailing by three goals, while Ibrahimović became the third player in league history to score two goals in his debut off the bench. In only 19 minutes played this season, Ibrahimović ranks tied for 14th in the league with two goals scored, while the Galaxy sit third in the Western Conference (2-1-1, 7 points).
The two-time World Cup participant entered the match in the 71st minute with the Galaxy trailing 3-1, before a Chris Pontius goal closed the gap in the 73rd minute. Ibrahimovic then unleashed an unbelievable nearly 40-yard curling strike over goalkeeper Tyler Miller to even the match at 3-3 in the 77th minute (Watch Goal).
Ibrahimović completed his brace in stoppage time to give the Galaxy a 4-3 lead. Ashley Cole sent a cross into the box, with Ibrahimović beating the goalkeeper and two defenders to the ball with a header that found its way into the back of the net to complete an unbelievable comeback and cap a remarkable debut (Watch Goal).
The Galaxy hosts Sporting Kansas City at the StubHub Center Sunday (9 p.m. ET, FS1).
The player of the week is chosen each week of the regular season by members of the North American Soccer Reporters. The organization includes print, television, radio and online journalists who cover domestic men’s soccer in the United States and Canada.