Ted Lasso: Is Zava a real footballer?

Cameron Frew
Maximilian Osinski as Zava in Ted Lasso Season 3Apple TV+

Ted Lasso Season 3 introduces a new character: Zava, a holier-than-thou footballing legend – but is he a real footballer?

Biscuits, wholesome quotes, and Roy Kent screaming “Oi!” – it’s good to be back at AFC Richmond. Ted Lasso Season 3 returned to our screens last week, and it’s like we never left.

In the first episode, we reunited with Ted amid his struggles with being apart from his son. Meanwhile, Nate the so-called great is trying to get to grips with his new job at West Ham United, working under the icy watch of Rupert – or is it Mr Mannion?

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In Episode 2 of the new season, three teams vie for the attention of Zava, a global football star who suddenly becomes a free agent – but is he a real footballer?

Spoilers for Ted Lasso to follow…

Is Zava a real footballer in Ted Lasso?

No, Zava isn’t a real footballer. He’s played by Maximilian Osinski, an actor who also starred as Agent Davis on Marvel’s Agents of SHIELD.

Zava is clearly modelled on Zlatan Ibrahimovic, a Swedish footballer who’s referred to himself in the third person in interviews and even described himself as a god in a Twitter exchange with LeBron James.

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In Episode 2, word quickly spreads that Zava has ditched Juventus and wants to play for a team in the UK, all because his partner watched The Office.

Rebecca wants to nab him, and worries Rupert may beat her to the punch. Lesley seemingly discovers that he’s primed to sign for Chelsea, but he appears to be swayed after meeting Rupert.

Meanwhile, Dani Rojas and the rest of the players – with the notable exclusion of Jamie Tartt – are ecstatic at the mere prospect of Zava joining the team. So, Rebecca confronts him in the toilet, calls him a “chicken sh*t”, and a few hours later, he decides to sign with Richmond.

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Episodes 1-4 of Ted Lasso Season 3 are available to stream on Apple TV+ now, as well as the first two seasons. You can check out the rest of our coverage below:

Ted Lasso Season 3 cast | Season 3 episodes & release schedule | What time do new Ted Lasso episodes drop? | Where is Ted Lasso Season 3 filmed? | How to make the Ted Lasso biscuits | Is there a real Ted Lasso Lego stadium?

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About The Author

Cameron is Deputy TV and Movies Editor at Dexerto. He's an action movie aficionado, '80s obsessive, Oscars enthusiast, and a staunch Scot. He earned a First-Class Honours Degree in Multimedia Journalism from Glasgow Caledonian University, accredited by the NCTJ and BJTC. He began his career at UNILAD, starting as a Junior Journalist and becoming Entertainment Editor prior to joining Dexerto. You can contact him at cameron.frew@dexerto.com.