Watford defender reveals secret to winding up Zlatan Ibrahimovic on the pitch

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Football News

With hundreds of goals to his name in an illustrious career that has taken him to some of the biggest clubs in Europe, Zlatan Ibrahimovic gets the better of his opponent more often than not.

Sometimes, however, even the Swedish veteran comes out on the wrong side of an on-field battle, and that was the case last Sunday when Watford saw off Manchester United in a 3-1 win - keeping Zlatan off the scoresheet in the process.

Now, one of the Watford back line, Miguel Britos, has revealed just how he kept Ibrahimovic quiet and, more specifically, the trick to annoying the United striker in order to put him off his game.

"It wasn’t the first time I played against him, I did so when he was at Inter and AC Milan," Britos said, via The Mirror. "We [Watford] were able to control him - as well as Rooney."

And the key to getting under Ibrahimovic's skin come match day?

"He’s a bit arrogant and gets annoyed easily. He really doesn’t like being touched."

So there you have it. Whilst a lot of defenders tend to back off the 6ft 5 inch striker through a mixture of fear and respect, what you actually have to do is get up close and personal if you want to get the better of Zlatan.

Indeed, there was a moment last Sunday when, after clashing with Britos, Ibrahimovic was so enraged that he vented his frustration directly at the referee.

While it might have left him at risk of getting on the wrong side of the big striker, the Watford defender has clearly benefited from coming up against Zlatan on numerous occasions - and he has honed his tactics well it seems.

But, just because he knows how to anger Ibrahimovic on the pitch, it doesn't mean that Britos has no respect for the former Barcelona, Milan and PSG forward.

"Beyond that, he’s still a phenomenon. He is a complete player and he is also very big and hard to defend."

Having scored four goals in the opening five games of the Premier League season, the 34-year-old has certainly had more good days than bad since joining United in the summer.

However, if more defenders begin to take on board Britos' advice and get touchy with Zlatan, it might just put him off his game.

United fans will be hoping that isn't the case this weekend when Wes Morgan, Robert Huth and Leicester City try to stop the Swedish striker.

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Wayne Rooney
Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Paris Saint-Germain
Premier League
Juan Mata
Manchester United
David de Gea
Ryan Giggs

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