Zlatan Ibrahimovic Reaffirms Message That LeBron James Should 'Stick to Sports'

Alex Galbraith
·2 min read

Image via Getty/Massimo Insabato/Archivio Massimo Insabato/Mondadori Portfolio

Zlatan Ibrahimovic was not moved by LeBron James’ response to his recent comments about athletes staying out of politics. A few days after James said in no uncertain terms that he plans to use his platform to push for political change, the soccer star doubled down on his initial comments in a press conference.

While speaking to the media ahead of an Italian music festival that he is co-hosting, Zlatan said he still thinks sports stars should play the game and leave politics to activists and politicians.

“Athletes unite the world, politics divide it,” he said on Tuesday, per a report from ESPN. “Our role is to unite the world by doing what we do best. Athletes should be athletes and politicians should do politics.”

James responded to his initial comments last week, saying he sees his role as an international superstar a little differently.

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“I would never shut up about things that’s wrong,” James said. “There’s no way I will ever just stick to sports because I understand how this platform … how powerful my voice is.”

He also noted that Zlatan was being more than a little hypocritical, as he had previously used his fame to speak out on racism in his home country of Sweden.

“I’m kind of the wrong guy to actually go at because I do my homework,” James added.