Ryan Giggs hails impact of Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Ryan Giggs hails impact of Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Following yet another match winning moment on Sunday, United legend Ryan Giggs had nothing but praise for Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Liam McMahon

As he has done so many times this season, Swedish hero Zlatan Ibrahimovic wrote English tabloid headlines on Sunday when he came off the bench to score the winner in Manchester United's 2-1 victory over Blackburn Rovers

Ibrahimovic crucial all season

The goal -- Ibrahimovic's 24th in all competitions this season -- was enough for United to see off the spirited hosts at Ewood Park and book a place in the FA Cup Quarter finals.

United, who will travel to Chelsea for their quarter final the weekend of March 11/12, have been carried all season by the goals of Ibrahimovic. No one else has more than nine for the Reds, and without the Swede's presence it's hard to imagine United hunting for the three cups they can still win this spring.

Ibrahimovic has proven himself invaluable time and again this season--just as he did at Ewood Park. (Photo credit: Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)

Plaudits earned, Ryan Giggs impressed

On Monday, United legend Ryan Giggs was emphatic in his praise for Ibrahimovic, extolling his self-confidence and ability to appear ageless.

"It is not easy (playing into your mid-30s).The first bad game that you have, everyone always says, 'He is too old' or he is this or that, so you're fighting against that all the time," he said.

United's all-time appearances leader went on to note that "to actually be centre-forward and be the man they are relying on really to score the goals is added pressure as well."

Giggs' effuse praise continued as he stated that, "He is not the kind of player that will be overawed by that, and you can see that with the hat-trick in midweek and obviously rescuing United (on Sunday)."

Cantona comparisons won't end any time soon

Although the comparison is not a new one, Giggs did not hesitate to compare Ibrahimovic to another United maverick: Eric Cantona.

The one-time winger noted that "there's similarities because of that confidence they have in their own ability and the goals that they have scored," and that the confidence carries over to all aspects of the game.

"It didn't faze Eric or Ibrahimovic coming to United and being the number one player," said Giggs. "Even when they are playing well and getting all the adoration, they don't get carried away. It's their job and you can see that he is a good professional, he is always fit and at his age to play centre-forward and to produce the goals he is producing is unbelievable."

Crucial run coming for United

Ibrahimovic has produced no shortage of magic moments for the Reds this season. However, manager Jose Mourinho and his charges will undoubtedly need several more if they are to continue to fight on four fronts.

In the next three and a half weeks, United face Europa League, Premier League, FA Cup and EFL Cup fixtures which will test their squad depth to the limit. If they are to end the season in glory, #ZlatanTime must continue.