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"Anyone who takes a vaccine does so because he believes in it, but everyone can have their opinion" - Zlatan Ibrahimovic on Novak Djokovic vaccination saga

Novak Djokovic and Zlatan Ibrahimovic at the Indian Wells Masters
Novak Djokovic and Zlatan Ibrahimovic at the Indian Wells Masters

Renowned footballer Zlatan Ibrahimovic made his stance clear on the Novak Djokovic vaccination saga in a recent interview with Laquestionviterepondue.com. Ibrahimovic pointed out that people get vaccinated to protect their health rather than to play a sport, but at the same time insisted that everyone can have their "own opinion" on the subject.

Novak Djokovic was deported from Australia last week after Immigration Minister Alex Hawke revoked the Serb's visa for a second time. As a result, the World No. 1 missed the Australian Open for the first time since 2004.

JUST IN: Unvaccinated tennis star Novak Djokovic is deported from Australia after losing visa battle, dashing his hopes of defending his Australian Open title cnn.it/3FyQZFK
Novak Djokovic beat David Ferrer 7-5 7-5 to win Paris Masters & gives his racket to Zlatan Ibrahimovic's son Vincent. http://t.co/C7eve6xnmD

The Swede opined that taking the COVID-19 vaccine for health purposes and to play a sport are "two different situations." He emphasized that while an individual is free to make a choice in the former situation, he is coerced to make it in the latter.

"OK, so you're doing it for health? But it's not the same thing to get vaccinated to be able to play in a tennis tournament. Anyone who takes a vaccine does so because he believes in it, because he thinks it is effective against the disease. But everyone can have their opinion," said Ibrahimovic.
"People shouldn't have to do this just to get to work. I got vaccinated because I think it protects me, not to play football. These are two different situations," added the AC Milan striker.

Ibrahimovic and Djokovic are close friends and were spotted having fun in Turin in December 2021.

Zlatan Visits Novak In Turin ⚽️🎾Ibrahimovic and Djokovic laughed together and shared stories, before they listened to music, with the World No. 1 singing and throwing his arms up to the beat, while the Swede clapped along.atptour.com/en/news/djokov… https://t.co/NwVaUwRYol

Zlatan Ibrahimovic chooses Muhammad Ali and Novak Djokovic as two atlethes he would most like to dine with

In the same interview, Ibrahimovic disclosed that renowned boxer Muhammad Ali and Novak Djokovic are the two athletes he would most like to have dinner with. Although Ali passed away in 2016, Ibrahimovic said it would have been an "amazing" experience to dine with the former heavyweight champion.

Happy birthday to a legend, on what would have been Mohammad Ali's 80th birthday ✨🐐 https://t.co/m7XaWkB2M4

When asked about a living athlete he would like to have dinner with, the Swede chose Djokovic, saying it was an easy choice since he knows the Serb well.

Novak Djokovic to @nicoleamiri: “I’m a Milan fan & I always have a rossonero heart. I hope they do well in CL & serie a. Zlatan is a warrior & champion, at his age despite injuries & surgery he’s still going on and pushing everyone to his high standard” https://t.co/9IMdbKALUy
"It would have been amazing with Muhammad Ali. Two large characters, two winners, two phenomena. The only problem would have been who would foot the bill... Yes, but that would be easy because I know him [Djokovic] well," remarked Ibrahimovic.

Also read: "Tennis has really only marketed three players over the last decade and now it has caught up with them" - Nick Kyrgios

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Edited by Nihal Taraporvala
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