Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho believes, Swedish striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic could still be playing for the Red Devils in the second half of the upcoming season. The striker’s contract was not renewed at the end of the 2016-17 season after suffering a knee ligament injury playing in a quarterfinal win against Anderlecht in the Europa League in April.

Amid speculations of a move to LA Galaxy, the former PSG forward has decided to remain in Manchester and is making a recovery at United’s Carrington medical facility under the supervision of the club’s medical staff.

The 35-year-old had an impressive first season with the club, scoring 28 goals in 46 games winning three coveted trophies along side. United boss Jose Mourinho has refused to rule out the fact that the talismanic Swede could still don the Red shirt making a comeback at Old Trafford.

On being asked about a possible return of the striker, Mourinho said, “If the decision is to stay and wait until December – he can’t be back until them – why not wait? We are speaking and changing ideas.”

The United manager has shown confidence in Zlatan but is certain about his availability only by the end of 2017. On when the striker will be available at his disposal again, he said:

“At the same time, let’s make a decision that makes us all happy and if that’s for him to stay and we wait until December, maybe. I don’t think before December.”

United have spent a staggering £106 million in the current transfer window to secure the services of Belgian striker Romelu Lukaku and Benfica defender Victor Lindelöf. Looking forward to the Champions League, Jose Mourinho wants to strengthen his squad and has admitted he is just 50% done with the transfer business.

The Portuguese had targeted four major positions to fill before the start of new season, but so far has managed to buy only two players with Croatian winger Ivan Perisic and Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic still among the leading targets.

Zlatan is a big-game player and has been sensational for the club in his first season, a player of his calibre can always be handy in the setup and help the club go forward. Jose Mourinho would want to utilise the services of the attacker to sharpen his side going into a big competition like Champions League.

First Published | 15 July 2017 2:41 PM
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