Manchester United’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic will be missing for three games after accepting a violent conduct charge from the English Football Association.
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Ibrahimovic, 35, was involved in two separate incidents with Bournemouth’s Tyrone Mings in the 1-1 draw at Old Trafford last weekend and was charged retrospectively after referee Kevin Friend missed his elbow on Mings’ head in the first half.
The incident took place moments after Zlatan appeared to have his head stamped on by Mings, as the Bournemouth defender was also charged with violent conduct but it is believed he will contest his charge as his punishment could be up to six games.
After United and Ibrahimovic accepted his charge, the FA released the following statement confirming he will miss the next three domestic games against Chelsea in the FA Cup quarterfinal, plus the Premier League games against Middlesbrough and West Brom.
“Zlatan Ibrahimovic will serve a three-match suspension with immediate effect after he admitted an FA charge of violent conduct and accepted the standard penalty.
“It follows an incident in or around the 44th minute of the game between Manchester United and AFC Bournemouth on Saturday (4 March 2017). The misconduct was not seen by the match officials at the time but caught on video.”
United will likely bring Marcus Rashford into the starting lineup in place of Ibrahimovic as the veteran Swedish striker copes with the highs and lows of life at the top.
Just over a week ago he was the hero for scoring twice, including a late winner, at Wembley as United beat Southampton to win the first major trophy of the Jose Mourinho era.
Now, he’ll be watching on from the sidelines as United head to the runaway PL leaders in the FA Cup and then come up against two gutsy opponents who they must beat to keep them top four hopes alive.