Zlatan Ibrahimovic surprises rescued Thai soccer team on “Ellen”

Known for regularly comparing himself to a lion, Zlatan Ibrahimovic admires bravery when he sees it.

The LA Galaxy forward dropped by The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Monday to surprise the Thai boys soccer team famously rescued from a cave earlier this year, and he bestowed upon them the highest compliment he could offer.

“I thought I was brave. But this team, these kids, they are braver than me,” Ibrahimovic said, seated alongside the team after their first studio interview since the rescue. “They showed their collective teamwork, patience, faith and belief in other hands, also. This is probably the best team in the world.”

Watch the full video below.

The Wild Boars soccer team endured 18 days inside a partially flooded cave in Chiang Rai this past summer. An international rescue effort ensured that everyone was extracted safely, capturing worldwide attention in the process.

In addition the meeting one of their heroes, the team had an opportunity to train with the Galaxy, plus received gear and game tickets from the club.

LAFC also recognized the Wild Boars on the field before their Oct. 12 home victory against the Houston Dynamo, giving the boys a chance to meet midfielder Mark-Anthony Kaye.